Federal investigators target fitness club owner

The owner of a fitness center in Lamar County accused of scamming costumers is being investigated by federal authorities.

Matthew Pizzolato 

allegedly offered a promotion allowing people to pay $100 for a year's membership to X-Treme fitness on Highway 98 West. After collecting the money, Pizzolato was forced to shut the business down because he was not paying rent.

Customers said Pizzolato skipped town with their money.

WDAM has now learned Pizzolato is also being investigated by several state and federal agencies in Louisiana for allegedly taking people's money in an investment scheme.

Pizzolato and his father, Sonny, own Gulf Region Guarantee along with several other companies which promise higher interest rates than CDs, but instead of investing the money, victim's lawyers claim the Pizzolatos used the money for personal reasons.

Published reports said as many as 160 elderly citizens may have invested more than $15 million in the so-called Ponzi Scheme.

We are told many of those investors have been contacted by the FBI. 

No arrests have been made.