Watching out for investment scams

Seven On Your Side
May 26, 2008 5:56:00 PM PDT
It was a deal that sounded too good to be true - double your money in just 30 days. When a single mom did it, she learned an expensive lesson, so she got Seven On Her Side.When confronted by Eyewitness News cameras, one man didn't like it. He's part of a so-called investment group that has tens of thousands of Michelle Bilotta's money.

"They've deceived me," she said. "I feel completely violated by these people."

Last fall, Michelle found out about Covenant Group investment adivsors. She gave them $75,000 and was promised incredible returns.

"Within 21 to 30 days, I'll get 100 percent return on my money," Bilotta said.

Michelle believed it, and she even gave the company additional money. She says she got some of her initial investment back, but is still out nearly $85,000.

"I think they're criminals," she said. "I think it's disgusting what they do to people."

Eyewitness News' Tappy Phillips tracked down one of the Covenant Group's representatives at their midtown office.

Tappy: "When you promised her a hundred percent return on her money, how does that happen?"
Rep: "I'm not at liberty to disclose that. I'm not at liberty to tell you how we do that."

He eventually promised to give back half of Michelle's initial investment, but needed a couple days.

Since we left, Michelle says she never saw a dime.

"I want them stopped," she said. "I want them prosecuted."

Michelle says she's reported this investment group to authorities and they are under investigation. She never checked out the group, as they should be registered with the Securities and Exchange Commission.

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