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September 22, 2012

Indictments issued in alleged Amazon River fraud

GREENVILLE — This is no way to save the rain forest.

A Rockwall County grand jury has indicted an individual who allegedly sold shares in a fake timber harvesting operation on the Amazon River.

Michael D. Alexander, 44, of Rockwall, received one indictment alleging securities fraud of $100,000 or more and one indictment alleging theft of property of $100,000 or more.

The grand jury serving the 439th District Court returned the charges August 22. Alexander was alleged in the indictments to have offered for sale or sold shares in Ecowood Recuperadore De Texas and Ecowood Resources International Inc. to three individuals between Aug. 30, 2007 and April 9, 2008, in amounts totaling $185,000.

Robert Elder with the Texas State Securities Board indicated Alexander spent investors’ money on personal expenses and told them Ecowood shares would jump in value once the company was sold.

“He also left out the small detail that Ecowood didn’t own or control any licenses to harvest timber from the Amazon,” Elder said in a release issued Thursday.

A date for an arraignment hearing on the indictments was not immediately released.

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