Retired DPS officer wanted by the FBI for defrauding $9.5 million from investors

Frederick Arias is wanted by the federal government for unlawful flight to avoid prosecution....
Frederick Arias is wanted by the federal government for unlawful flight to avoid prosecution. He, along with his accomplice, was recently convicted of defrauding $9.5M from investors, despite his absence from court.(Federal Bureau of Investigation)
Published: Jun. 1, 2023 at 12:04 PM MST
Email This Link
Share on Pinterest
Share on LinkedIn

PHOENIX (3TV/CBS 5) — A retired Arizona Department of Public Safety officer is wanted by the FBI after being charged federally on March 19, 2020, with unlawful flight to avoid prosecution. The officer, along with a former financial advisor, was recently convicted for a $9.5 million investment fraud scheme he and his partner ran from December 2015 to September 2016.

As explained in a release from the Arizona Attorney General’s Office, former financial advisor Bradley Tennison and retired DPS officer Frederick Arias defrauded investors through The Joseph Project based in Gilbert. The organization, the release said, “purported to be a Christian institution offering risk-free investments with guaranteed rates of return and the promise of contributing to humanitarian projects.”

The FBI started looking into Tennison and Arias’ plan and learned that about $9.5 million were stolen from investors. The money was taken and transferred to various accounts, including ones that belonged to Tennison and Arias. In some instances, the two laundered $1 million by purchasing 50,820 1-ounce collector silver coins that they planned to ship overseas.

Tennison and Arias were indicted on June 17, 2019, on 19 felony counts, which include conspiracy, fraudulent schemes and artifices and money laundering. Though Tennison has been ordered to pay back $9 million to his victims in monthly installments, Arias has been missing since at least 2019 and is wanted for felony flight.

See a spelling or grammar error in our story? Please click here to report it and include the headline of the story in your email.

Do you have a photo or video of a breaking news story? Send it to us here with a brief description