Police say a Danville man ripped off elderly victims under the guise of being their “insurance man.” Paul J. Cero, 63, is charged with theft by deception for taking $20,ooo from an 81 year-old victim for an investment Cero assured her would yield “large returns.” In December of 2009, Cero allegedly had the victim cash out an annuity and drove her to the Susquehanna Bank in New Holland where the victim wired $20,000 to an account in Nevada.
The victim received only $1,400 in cash from Cero on her investment. The victim claims she called Cero numerous times and was always told to be patient. Eventually Cero stopped returning her calls.
Through the investigation another victim was found who is residing in Honeybrook. This victim reported the same scenario involving Cero who drove her to the Fulton Bank in New Holland where she wired $20,000 from an account to Nevada. This victim reported she never received any money from Cero who would not return her calls.
The investigation found the money was wired to an account in Nevada which is now closed.
Police filed charges of Theft by Deception against Cero, who is not a licensed securities broker in the Commonwealth of PA. MDJ Hartman arraigned Cero and set his bail at $150,000 cash which he posted through a Lancaster Bail Bondsman.