Pietro S. has cheated hundreds of small investors for over four years

Pietro S. has cheated hundreds of small investors for over four years

For over four years, he had cheated hundreds of small investors in Switzerland and Germany and sold them worthless stocks. Financial juggler Pietro S. * (38). According to the indictment, the Italian took millions of francs for his life of luxury through fraud. To do this, he must go to the District Court of Bülach ZH.

According to the indictment, he offered, inter alia, shares in a network of self-service petrol stations which, thanks to its low costs, offers cheaper gasoline and is therefore “one of the fastest growing companies in the Spanish oil industry”. In fact, the company only owned two gas stations which never made a profit.

Blick visited several Pietro S. customers who lost well over 10,000 francs. If they could not reveal the scam in time, would there be a little more investigation?

Perfect staging

“No,” says an 80-year-old pensioner who wishes to remain anonymous. “Everything was perfectly staged. As I didn’t want to get along on the phone, the clerk even met me in a restaurant. It made an absolutely serious impression, ”he says to Blick. And further: “I lost part of my pension. Now I have to get back to work. ”

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Loss hurts

Information and communication technician Patric Büeler (51) openly speaks of a bad investment. He bought the shares for over 20,000 francs. He recalls: “Since I have invested in small start-ups every now and then, I’m in the database. That’s why they called me. The documentation made sense, I didn’t suspect anything. It was only a letter from the prosecutor’s office that I found out about the fraud. I knew it was venture capital, but the loss still hurts. “

Patric Büeler learned his lessons

He lost 20,000 francs: Patric Büeler learned his lessons (00:39)

Financial specialists among the victims

Pietro S. built an edifice of lies that even financial professionals would not be able to see through with reasonable effort. He set the share price himself and published data on the financial firm. The banks took over the charts without checking them. In turn, rising prices have convinced many skeptical investors. A public prosecutor in a large bank fell for this, but also members of the audit committees of several municipalities. Everyone thought they were making a good investment.

Predatory mood in a call center

According to the indictment, Pietro S employed ten highly skilled telephone dealers. There was a predatory atmosphere in the call center, and the salaries were paid on a commission basis. The winner was the one who generated the highest sales volume. The indictment quotes what the salesperson should say from the guide: “You’re lucky, I represent a company that has been successful for years. Since I can also see behind the scenes, I can make you an offer with a clear conscience. Yes, Mr. Muster, it’s high time we made money together. ”

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But only the accused won. From February 2016 to February 2019, Pietro S. earned an average of 10,067 francs and 53,084 euros per month. But there was little left of wealth: a few luxury watches and a few insignificant real estate in Austria, and tens of thousands of francs spread over several bank accounts. On the other hand, at least 350 people who were defrauded lost over one million Swiss francs and ten million euros.

The trial against Pietro S. is conducted in a shortened form. The prosecutor demands a sentence of four and a half years in prison and expulsion from the country for seven years for commercial fraud and repeated unfaithful business transactions.

* Name changed

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