Feds Nab Irving Scam Artist Who Sold Fake Corporations to Pay for Strippers, Sports Cars

Categories: Crime
EdMolz.jpg
Brenda Chapman
Edward Molz III at 3rd Street Financial's North Dallas "offices," back when life was all strip clubs, sports cars and cosmetic surgery.
For a while there, life was pretty sweet for Ed Molz III. The financial start-up he formed last August was doing great business, and while his office staff fielded calls from investors around the world, he lived the good life, with shopping for sports cars and getting plastic surgery by day, and dropping a thousand bucks a night at Dallas strip clubs.

The investors whose investments paid for his lifestyle, though, knew him as "Frank Sullivan," and while few ever met him in person, he talked a good enough game to lure hundreds of investors into the sham operation he named 3rd Street Financial.

For $3,000 to $6,000 up front, the company supposedly sold "aged" corporations with lines of credit up to $400,000 -- a quick way for small business owners to get credit for their start-ups at a time when banks aren't lending like they used to. "We are having a 99.9% success rate right now even in these crazy economic times," the company's website claimed, according to an FBI investigator's affidavit.

Filed along with a motion for forfeiture for the $65,000 house Molz bought in Irving, the affidavit recounts the bureau's four-month investigation into 3rd Street Financial, which ended last week in Molz's arrest. Not before he'd taken hundreds of customers for over $1 million, much of which he blew on a 40-foot Silverton boat, a Maserati, a Corvette, a BMW 650, a Lamborghini Murcielago and a $65,000 house in Irving. He blew another $20,000 on travel and over $25,000 on plastic surgery, according to the affidavit. (Read it in full after the jump.)

Brenda Champan, who lives in Richardson, says she paid $6,500 for one of 3rd Street Financial's top-tier corporations, to expand her business (which happens to be a clearinghouse for reviews of passive investment operations). "I was told by a couple of other business acquaintances about this," Chapman says. "I went on the word of somebody else and they went on the word of somebody else, who went on the word of someone else."

Chapman says she knows of around 500 investors who got roped into 3rd Street Financial, but that she was one of a relatively small number who visited him in person, at a meeting in the company's office space at LBJ Freeway and Webb Chapel Road.

"He was not sleazy at all, he presented himself to be very professional, very knowledgeable, didn't hesitate on anything," Chapman recalls.

"The bad thing about this," Chapman says, "is everybody's in a credit crunch right now, nobody's lending, and you have this guy coming along saying, 'We've nurtured these companies from the beginning.'"

She says she invested in 3rd Street Financial on the word of a Canadian investor who told her he'd already been paid. She says the Canadian had signed on as a broker with 3rd Street, and hoped to see a cut of the back-end profits if the scheme did well. When he admitted as much to her back in May, she says, "we knew immediately it was a scam."

James Lambert in Marion, Ga., is one of many more who piled onto a 3rd Street Financial scam report forum. Lambert says he'd been looking for a loan to buy cattle to start a dairy business. After hearing about 3rd Street Financial from a broker in a nearby town, he put in $3,500. "He said it was a new one," Lambert recalls. "He was saying, due to the way everything is right now with the credit crunch, banks weren't turning out them big loans like they used to do... We just assumed everybody knew what they were doing."

The U.S. Attorney's office has a month to bring charges before a Grand Jury; Molz could face up to 20 years in prison and $250,000 fine for each count of mail or wire fraud.

3rd Street Financial FBI Affidavit
My Voice Nation Help
11 comments
Sort: Newest | Oldest
no name
no name

I grew up going to school with this guy...he was not the brightest bulb in the chandelier...at all. I can't fathom he came up with this...WHO put him up to this and gave him the idea...unless he was scheming since middle school to pull a fast one on everyone!  I used to tease him about being an idiot...I mean he is one for coming up with this!  Shame on you Ed!

Brenda Chapman
Brenda Chapman

Boy, I don't blame him. If I had that kinda money, I'd probably get some plastic surgery done to remove my penis!

Chris
Chris

I'm guessing this Brenda Chapman lady has a very bad credit score and cannot get a traditional loan. B/c she probably didn't pay a lot of loans, missed payments etc. in the recent past. Which is why she has a bad score and was "desperate". How is it any different than this Ed guy taking her money and not giving it back?? Reminds me of on "Boiler Room" when they talk on how they "Don't pitch the bitch!". This Brenda Chapman lady obviously got screwed over, and felt like an idiot. Being a guy, we'd probably say to ourselves "Wow, I'm an idiot!" and just move on with our lives. Women on the other hand, are a completely different story! I guess she single handedly took him down through her work with the FBI etc. Either way, as long as there will be idiots handing their money over to people for some sort of quick $ type of exchange, there will always be scammers etc. Not to mention this whole "buy a credit line" sounds shadey anyways.

Doug
Doug

I certainly recognize I'm not the brightest bulb in the factory (any factory), but I can't imagine being so desperate to fall for bull like this..You're buying a line of credit for an "aged corporation"? WTF??? Did I miss something? Did these people ask to see the financial statements of these "aged corporations"? Did they ask to speak to people who work for these "aged corporations"? Jeeeze...

Grumpy Demo
Grumpy Demo

"she invested in 3rd Street Financial on the word of a Canadian investor who told her he'd already been paid"

Where to start, . . "a fool and their money".

I is interesting the over the past two decades Dallas has become the epicenter for con-artists and corrupt TV Preachers.

It like Dallas is a game preserve for scam artists, crooks, and phonies.

Johnny Hidalgo
Johnny Hidalgo

Since this is a federal offense, he will do all of his time...he won't get off early for good behavior. Not to mention the fines he'll have to pay for each count of fraud he's facing...it could be over 200. He wasn't the brains of this operation, he's too dumb for that...he was merely the fall guy and he's going to fall hard.

bill holston
bill holston

BubbaBGood2U:the math on how much time he does is wrong in the Federal System. He'll do time and very likely ALL of it.

He should. this is sad on a couple levels. People are desperate for financing, some of these 'investors' probably have good business models/ideas, but cannot get conventional lenders to look at it in this economic climate.

BubbaBGood2U
BubbaBGood2U

If he scammed that much money then this house is a sham address he used just to have an address in his name. Why else would he buy a $65K house when he has that kind of money. Some stated above the yard needed mowing,,,he probably didn't even stay there. As smart as he is my guess is he has another higher dollar house or two somewhere else, maybe overseas, in someone else's name so that when he finishes his couple years in prison he has a nice place to crash and spend all the money he has hidden in Swiss Bank accounts. Even if he were to get a twenty year sentence, he knows with good behaviour in a minimum security prison he will be out in just a couple years.

Andrew
Andrew

Its not just the fact the spent more (actually a lot more) on cars than a house. Its that he parked a $400,000 car at a $65,000 house in Irving. Google map it. It only has a 1 car garage. Also, with all that money he could have bought a edger. Mow your grass scumbag.

Montemalone
Montemalone

What kind of genius spends more on his cars than his house?

Oh! This is Dallas, everybody!

And for whom was this plastic surgery?

Lakewooder
Lakewooder

Would love to have seen the look on the face of the women when he whipped his Lambo Murcielago into the carport. Talk about a WTF moment.

Now Trending

From the Vault

 

General

Loading...