An investment manager and former Middletown fire chief with a history of ripping off investors was sentenced Wednesday to 15 years in prison for running a $10 million Ponzi scheme.

Vincent P. Falci, 59, was convicted in December 2018 of three counts of wire fraud and one count of securities fraud following a two-week trial in Trenton federal court.

Federal prosecutors said many of Falci's earliest victims were friends and family, including firefighters and policemen whose retirement funds were among the millions that Falci misused over decades of cheating and lying to investors, U.S Attorney Craig Carpenito said.

Falci already had been sued by the New Jersey Bureau of Securities, which also sued his wife and son. In 2015, the family was ordered to repay $6.7 million for cheating investors through "the Saber Funds" to pay for a lavish lifestyle, including seven houses.

He also was permanently barred in 2015 from working in the securities industry in New Jersey.

By then, Falci had also started the Vicor Fund, targeting wealthier investors and stealing mole more than $10 million over a four-year span ending in 2016. At the same time, prosecutors said he reported fake investment gains on every monthly statement.

Falci hid his theft by using a shell company, forging emails and reports, and creating fake assets for the fund.

In addition to his prison sentence, Falci also will serve three years of supervised release, with restitution and forfeiture to be determined at a later date.

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