Stanford Surrenders to FBI
Alleged fraudster turns himself in after grand jury hands down criminal charges
By Rob Quinn,  Newser Staff
Posted Jun 19, 2009 12:26 AM CDT
Art once property of the Stanford Financial Group is on display at AMC Liquidators in Fort Lauderdale, Fla., earlier this month.   (AP Photo/Alan Diaz)
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(Newser) – Sir Robert Allen Stanford turned himself in to authorities soon after criminal charges were filed against him yesterday, the BBC reports. The billionaire financier is now in FBI custody, according to his lawyer. Stanford, whose firm Stanford Financial was shut down by authorities earlier this year, already faces civil charges over what the SEC described as a "fraud of shocking magnitude."

The SEC accuses Stanford and other execs of running an $8 billion Ponzi scheme involving certificates of deposit with unfeasibly high rates of interest issued through his Antigua-based bank. The Texan—who pleaded the Fifth in the civil case—maintains his innocence and accuses the SEC of needlessly destroying his business.