Fool's Gold

Downfall of a bullion dealer

For a while at least, William Alderdice, 39, and his brother James, 26, seemed to have the Midas touch. During the past three years, they transformed a small storefront jewelry business in Fort Lauderdale, Fla., into the International Gold Bullion Exchange (IGBE), a thriving enterprise with 1,000 employees, branch offices in Dallas and Los Angeles, and 1982 sales of $80 million. William Alderdice, the company's chief executive, bragged that IGBE was the biggest gold and silver dealer in the U.S. In television commercials and ads splashed across such...

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