A former FedEx driver and the founder and chief investment officer of a local management firm was sentenced to more than two years in prison for stealing more than half a million dollars from local investors.
Joshua Knaup, 41, opened up an investment management fund, EquityPro Capital, in Downtown San Diego after he lost his job at FedEx.
In 2013, he claimed to have started "The F2 Fund" and duped victims into investing hundreds of thousands of dollars in the non-existent hedge fund.
In one instance, he convicted Bankers Hill couple, Lois and Henry Mathews to invest $240,000 during a celebration for the couple's wedding anniversary.
Another victim from Coronado lost more than $130,000.
According to court documents, a Border Patrol agent also became a victim of Knaup's after investing $10,000. When the agent asked Knaup to return his money, Knaup wrote him a check that bounced.
“Mr. Knaup perpetrated a scheme weaved with facades and lies to prey on trusting, hard-working people intending to make legitimate investments,” said Special Agent in Charge Eric S. Birnbaum.
Knaup used the money from investors on personal expenses, including his office space in downtown.
When investors began to realize Knaup had never invested their money in a hedge fund, he ran away to Mexico.
Knaup was sentenced Monday to 33 months in prison and order to pay $556, 639 in restitution.