NEW PORT RICHEY, Fla. — A couple in Pasco County is still searching for justice after they invested more than $40,000 into a man who turned out to be a fraud.
“If it’s too good to be true. It ain’t true,” Tony Gagny Sr. said.
Gagny Sr. says he learned the hard lesson almost 10 years ago.
“He’s a predator. He preys on people. Innocent people that don’t know any better. And I didn’t know any better," said Gagny Sr.
Gagny and his wife, Lynn, say they met Michael Motola at a roller hockey league where their son’s all played together.
Motola told them he was a stockbroker who could make them big money. The Gagny’s invested more than $40,000 with him.
After an initial dividend payment of about $530, the only thing the couple ever got was a promissory note.
The Gagny's money was gone and an investigation by the Pasco Sheriff’s Office revealed they weren't alone.
Authorities found several more victims, some who lost hundreds of thousands of dollars.
“He hurt a lot of people and he needs to pay," said Lynn Gagny.
Motola plead guilty on the fraud cases but was on probation.
A judge just found him guilty of violating that probation for several reasons, including failing to make restitution payments.
Motola faces the possibility of significant prison time on the original charges.
“The state attorney is going to ask for 30. And hopefully he’ll get 30, and he’ll sit there in jail and think about what he did," said Gagny, Sr.
The Gagny’s are not optimistic about getting any of their money back. They say Motola had years to spend it all and they are told he doesn’t have any assets left in his name.