AUSTIN, Texas — An Austin man was convicted of federal wire fraud and money laundering charges in connection with a scheme to defraud customers out of millions of dollars, federal investigators said on Friday.

Charles McAllister, 49, CEO and owner of Bullion Direct Inc., was convicted of two counts of wire fraud and one count of engaging in a monetary transaction with criminally derived property.

The Department of Justice said from Jan. 2009 to July 2015, McAllister orchestrated a scheme that falsely represented that the funds given by customers were used to purchase precious metals on the customers' behalf, and that they either shipped directly to the customer or were stored in BDI's vault.

Instead, McAllister used the money meant for the precious metals and spent it on BDI corporate expenses, other investment activities and for his own personal use and gain.

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McAllister faces up to 20 years in federal prison for each wire fraud count and up to 10 years in federal prison for the money laundering charge. The court is also seeking a monetary judgment of $16,186,212.56, representing the amount of proceeds obtained directly or indirectly from the defendant's alleged scheme during the time of the indictment.

McAllister is scheduled to be sentenced on Dec. 19.


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