An Irvine businessman has been hauled into federal court and remains in custody for allegedly duping about 50 investors out of at least $3.6 million in scams involving technological "inventions" to thwart counterfeiters of state documents and increase gas mileage of any car to 150 mpg.
Peter Heinrich Conrad Reinert, 60, who at least until recently lived in Laguna Beach, was CEO of two Irvine companies that shared the same address: Global Encryption Imaging Corp. and Fazer Technologies Corp., which were "developing" anti-counterfeiting technology and a gas-slashing electromagnetic motor respectively.
But Reinert was taken into custody by the FBI on Tuesday. According to a 14-count federal wire fraud indictment unsealed the next day, Reinert collected money from investors in the companies that he spent on himself and his family, who lived lavishly in a rented Laguna Beach home, rode in expensive luxury automobiles and traveled extensively. Money from investors was also deposited into the bank accounts of Reinert's children, according to the feds.
To hear the FBI tell it, he is a piece of work. He is alleged to have falsely told investors they would not lose money and that he was a U.S. Marine and Secret Service agent, contentions denied by the Department of Defense. A search warrant filed by the FBI applied to Global Encryption Imaging, Fazer Technologies and a third company, Income from Waste, that was "developing" technology to convert waste such as old tires into fuel.
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What Reinert failed to tell investors was that he had been convicted in Los Angeles County Superior Court in June 1990 for grand theft and in federal court in February 2000 for fraudulent use of unauthorized access device, according to the indictment.
The FBI notes he is also under investigation by the IRS for tax fraud and that he has used multiple aliases, including Peter Michael Berger, whose Polish bank account received funds from Reinert.
He has one passport stating he is a U.S. citizen and another declaring he is a German native, according to the FBI, which adds he carried a gun in his office despite not being allowed to because of his felony convictions.