Trial starts for Ponzi scheme suspect

David McQueen goes into federal court for a bond violation hearing, after which he was incarcerated. (April 8, 2013)
David McQueen goes into federal court for a bond violation hearing, after which he was incarcerated. (April 8, 2013)

GRAND RAPIDS, Mich. (AP) — Jury selection is starting in the trial of a Grand Rapids-area man who is accused of a $46 million investment scheme that left hundreds of people broke.

David McQueen was a successful insurance salesman who collected money from investors and invested it with another company that turned out to be a fraud. The government says McQueen continued to tell investors their money was safe instead of disclosing the truth.

Jury selection begins Tuesday in Grand Rapids federal court.

McQueen denies fraud and money laundering charges and says he relied on legitimate legal advice. Prosecutors acknowledge that McQueen started with a legitimate plan but then changed course.

McQueen is accused of keeping $100,000 a month for himself and making monthly payments to investors with cash from other investors.

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