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FDLE arrests Cape Coral man for investment scams

For Immediate Release
November 9, 2022
 
CAPE CORAL, Fla. – Agents with the Florida Department of Law Enforcement (FDLE) arrested Ludovic Laroche, 54, of Cape Coral on charges of racketeering, securities/investments prohibited practices, embezzlement, sale of unregistered securities and violations of the Florida Securities and Investor Protection Act.  Laroche is accused of stealing hundreds of thousands from at least 20 victims through fraudulent investment scams.  The case was a joint investigation between FDLE and The Office of Financial Regulation. 
 
FDLE agents began the investigation in 2020 after receiving a complaint.  Agents say Laroche targeted the Haitian community making presentations to several Haitian Christian church congregations in Lee, Charlotte and Collier counties.
 
In one scheme, he urged more than a dozen victims to invest in Laroche Real Estate Investments, LLC telling potential investors he bought and flipped houses.  He promised 10 percent interest annually on the investment, but agents say he never bought houses to flip.  Over eight years, he purchased five properties, selling four of them.  He collected more than $672,000 from the victims, but only repaid $93,500 to them.     
 
In another scheme, he enticed his victims to invest in Houdini Taxi Apps, LLC telling them he owned a taxi service and was developing a cell phone ride share application.  The investigation shows Laroche never owned any taxis and the application was never made available to the public.
 
In a third scam, Laroche convinced a neighbor to give him $15,000 to invest in a car company, but Laroche never purchased the stock. 
 
The investigation is ongoing and FDLE agents say there could be additional victims.  If you have information about this crime, please contact FDLE Ft. Myers at (800) 407-4880.
 
Laroche was arrested yesterday and booked into the Lee County Jail.  The State Attorney’s Office, 20TH Judicial Circuit, will prosecute the case.
 
For Further Information Contact:
FDLE Office of Public Information
(850) 410-7001