United States Attorney Melinda Haag and FBI Special Agent in Charge David J. Johnson announced Tuesday that a federal jury had convicted 44-year-old Melvin Russell Shields and 59-year-old Michael Sims of defrauding individual investors in the Northern District of California and elsewhere between 2006 and 2009 in connection with various real estate development projects.
A third partner, 57-year-old Sam Stafford, pleaded guilty prior to trial.
Haag and Johnson say the men engaged in investment fraud targeting elderly investors and encouraging them to cash out their individual retirement accounts and wire the proceeds to S3 Partners.
Shields and Sims are scheduled to be sentenced in April. Stafford will be sentenced in March.