The Real Deal Miami

Drywall expert has Ponzi past

April 20, 2009 12:07PM

Michael Thomas Martin, a self-styled expert in the defective Chinese drywall that’s damaged houses and could be linked to health problems, says he’s doing his best to do good, despite recent news of his 1998 conviction on fraud charges. He spent 46 months in prison on a securities fraud charge that involved a classic Ponzi scheme, and was ordered to pay $1.68 million in restitution. He left prison in 2001 and became a consumer watchdog with Justice & Integrity Project Consultants, which was renamed America’s Watchdog. While some Floridians have cut ties with him, Martin said he’s tried to rebuild his life in such a way as to help people and make a difference.