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Fla. Man Charged in $8 Million Facebook Fraud

Accused of pocketing money from investors wanting to buy shares

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A Florida investment adviser was charged Tuesday in an $8 million securities fraud scheme that federal prosecutors say capitalized on enthusiasm for Facebook shares.

Craig L. Berkman was arrested at his home in Odessa, Fla., and held after a court appearance in Tampa until a hearing Thursday.

The 71-year-old businessman was charged with two counts each of securities fraud and wire fraud, accused of claiming to own Facebook shares before the company went public in May when he didn't directly own shares. Prosecutors said he pocketed much of the $8 million he received from more than 50 investors. If convicted, he could face up to 80 years in prison.