A Pella man who told investors he was a health coach and consultant has been sentenced to more than six-and-a-half years in prison for running a Ponzi scheme.
According to a news release from the U.S. Attorney for the Southern District of Iowa, Mark Alan Blankespoor told more than 100 investors he was developing medically-oriented gyms and he had licensed the program to fitness clinics across the country. Prosecutors say at least 100 victims gave Blankespoor $15 million to invest over a four-year period. Blankespoor admitted to authorities he used the money for his personal expenses and to pay other investors.
In addition to his 80-month prison sentence, Blankespoor has been ordered to pay victims of the scheme nearly $8.5 million.