Georgia man claims to make you fast, easy money. Victims say he is nothing but a master manipulator

ATLANTA — Jilted investors claim a Georgia man is behind an international Ponzi scheme, raking in millions.

That man says he’s simply a savvy investor sharing those opportunities with others.

Channel 2 consumer investigator Justin Gray confirmed from sources that the state of Georgia’s securities division has an open and active investigation into Ed Zimbardi.

And they aren’t alone. The state of California and a Canadian province are already taking legal action.

It was a promise of fast, easy money that impacted people from all walks of life, all over the country.

“It’s a feeling that I can’t replicate,” investor Nathan Whaley said.

“The money was hitting my crypto wallet,” another investor told Gray, asking only to be identified as Jennifer over fear of retaliation.


“I kept saying to people, you know, there’s never a losing day,” investor Derek Corrado said.

“It was going great. It was going phenomenal even. And it was hard to believe that it wasn’t real. Like you couldn’t convince me otherwise,” Whaley said.

The investors were doing so well that they had to let friends and family in on it too.

“My coworker, his son, his son -- had multiple friends that invested,” Whaley said.

“My biggest mistake was that I contacted people who I knew would use this as a blessing,” Corrado said.

“I also had my mother, who is a recent widow, invest. And shortly after that, it was gone,” Jennifer said.

Everything they invested disappeared. But were the investment gains ever there at all?

“Personally, I invested $60,000,” Jennifer said.

“It was a facade. Every bit of it was fake smoke and mirrors at best,” Whaley said.

All you have to do is Google Ed Zimbardi, and you start to see what Whaley means.


Is he a meteorologist who tracks hurricanes according to a press release? A renowned environmental activist, according to a Texas news site? An anti-human trafficking philanthropist, according to an Oregon TV station or a musician, according to a West Virginia site?

All the articles posted within days of each other from a paid press service, are likely to hide who Georgia resident Ed Zimbardi really is.

“He is a master manipulator,” Jennifer told Gray.

A man with a long history of investment controversies. Some now-former investors call them Ponzi schemes.

“He sells you a dream. That’s what he’s doing,” Corrado said.

A convicted felon here in Georgia, the California Department of Financial Protection sent Zimbardi and his crypto program a cease-and-desist order last year. British Columbia in Canada sent a cease trade order.

He has previously had to settle with federal regulators at the SEC.

“He’s one of the world’s greatest salesmen, I will say that. I mean, he’s great at lying, phenomenal at it,” Whaley said.

There was no sign of Ed Zimbardi at the modest Flowery Branch home he maintains here in Georgia.

For weeks now, Gray has been emailing, texting, and calling Zimbardi, trying to get him to talk to us about his investment opportunities tied to the online trading platform Whaley and Corrado used, and the so-called Crypto Program Jennifer invested in.

While he won’t respond to us, he did sit down for an interview with YouTuber Brandon Williams, who calls himself the Ponzi Patrol, where Zimbardi repeatedly claimed he’s not the man behind the investments.

“These people wanted to remain anonymous,” Zimbardi said during the interview. “I’m the master affiliate that helps any and all people who want to get started.”

With Crypto Program, Zimbardi and the anonymous investors he claims he speaks for, guaranteed Jennifer and other investors 25% returns each month.

“The red flags were there, but I just felt like, well, when you’re making money, you want to believe in it,” Jennifer said.

If you do the math with a compound interest calculator, a simple $5,000 investment with profits reinvested each month would make more than $3 billion in just five years.

Zimbardi claims he’s been part of the same investment for more than a decade, making him allegedly a  quadrillionaire -- by far the richest man on Earth on even a modest $5,000 start.

“Let’s hear what you have to say about why you’re not retired -- a quadrillionaire,” Zimbardi was asked during the YouTube interview.

“It’s a simple answer,” he said.

“Simple?” the interviewer asked.

“I enjoy to help. I enjoy helping people. And when people lose money for whatever reason, I enjoy helping them recover it,” Zimbardi said.

“There’s nobody giving you 25% return on your investment without it being something shady going on,” Jennifer said.

“What he was selling wasn’t real?” Gray asked Whaley.

“No, he faked it till he made it. I mean, he’s still making it. He’s still doing things to this day,” Whaley said.

More than a decade after serving prison time on theft by taking charges, Zimbardi received a pardon from the state of Georgia.

Gray confirmed that Georgia securities officials are investigating Zimbaldi. We don’t know exactly where he is right now.

But we do know that he is already promoting another investment plan -- Something called AdMediaSpend -- promising on a website last week that it is launching any day.