LexisNexis® Legal Newsroom
SEC Busts $33 Million Ponzi Scheme Touting Pro Athlete Loans

The Securities and Exchange Commission filed an emergency enforcement action alleging that a Massachusetts company has raised nearly $32 million from dozens of investors under the guise of providing lucrative loans to high-profile athletes during the "off-season." Capital Financial Partners...

Atlanta Man Indicted for $1 Million Forex Ponzi Scheme

An Atlanta man faces multiple criminal fraud charges after being accused of raising more than $1 million from investors in a foreign exchange market Ponzi scheme. Stafford S. Maxwell, 46, was indicted on ten counts of wire fraud stemming from his former ownership of Millennium Capital Exchange, Inc....

Son-in-Law of New York Lawmaker Charged with $7 Million Ponzi Scheme

The son-in-law of New York lawmaker Sheldon Silver was indicted on charges that he operated a Ponzi scheme through his investment fund that duped investors out of at least $7 million. Marcello Trebitsch, also known as Yair Trebitsch, was charged with a single count of securities fraud and a single count...

SEC Files Offering Fraud and Ponzi Scheme Cases

A staple of SEC enforcement in recent years has been offering fraud and Ponzi scheme cases. This week the Commission filed two more of these actions, one an offering fraud targeting military personnel and a second and investment fund fraud case which virtually told investors it was a Ponzi scheme. SEC...

Facing Potential Clawback, Church Asks Members to Donate

A Michigan church that received approximately $300,000 in donations from a convicted Ponzi schemer has spurned a request by authorities to return the funds, instead announcing the creation of a fund that parishioners could donate to and which ultimately would be used to help the fraud victims. Resurrection...

Madoff Victims That Invested $1 Million or Less Will Soon Be Even

The court-appointed bankruptcy trustee overseeing the recovery of assets in Bernard Madoff's massive Ponzi scheme is seeking approval to distribute more than $1.25 billion to the notorious con man's victims - an effort that, if approved, will result in the full repayment of losses suffered by...

Former NBA Assistant Charged With $4 Million Ponzi Scheme

A former special assistant for the Seattle Supersonics is facing a wire fraud charge for what prosecutors are describing as a Ponzi scheme that falsely claimed a relationship with Los Angeles Clippers owner Steve Ballmer and took in $4 million from investors. Steve Gordon was charged with a single count...

Court: Trustee Can Recover Ponzi Investor's Principal and Profits

In a rare move, a Connecticut bankruptcy court has approved a court-appointed bankruptcy trustee's efforts to recover not only the false profits from a group of Ponzi investors, but also those investors' invested principal due to their lack of good faith in making those investments. The decision...

April 2015 Ponzi Scheme Roundup

Below is a summary of the activity reported for April 2015. The reported stories reflect: 10 guilty pleas or convictions in pending cases; over 105 years of newly imposed sentences for people involved in Ponzi schemes; at least 11 new Ponzi schemes involving nearly $100 million; and an average age of...

100% Recovery Possible for Victims of $220 Million Ponzi Scheme

Hundreds of victims of a massive $220 million Utah Ponzi scheme may soon become part of an extremely rare group of Ponzi victims who were able to recover 100% of their principal losses. Gil Miller , the court-appointed receiver over Management Solutions, recently obtained court approval for a proposed...

Zeek Receiver Seeks $6 Million From Foreign Net Winners

The court-appointed receiver tasked with recovering funds for victims of the $600 million ZeekRewards Ponzi scheme has filed a fresh wave of clawback lawsuits seeking to recover more than $6 million in false profits" realized by the scheme's European and South American investors. Receiver Kenneth...

Wells Fargo Settles Florida Ponzi Case for $3.175 Million

Just before a jury was set to deliberate following a 16-day trial, Wells Fargo agreed to pay $4 million to settle claims it aided and abetted a Florida Ponzi scheme that caused tens of millions of dollars in losses to thousands of victims. Jonathan Perlman, the receiver appointed over companies previously...

D&O Insurance: Professional Liability Exclusion Precludes Coverage for D&O Claims Against Ponzi Schemer’s Bank

In a coverage dispute arising out of the long-running Rothstein Ponzi scheme scandal , a Southern District of Florida judge, applying Florida law, has held that the professional services exclusion in the Rothstein bank’s D&O insurance policy precluded coverage for claims brought against the...

California Man Extradited to Face Charges for Alleged $13.5 Million Ponzi Scheme

A California man has been extradited from Texas to face charges that he masterminded a Ponzi scheme that duped investors, including his grandfather, of nearly $14 million. Brandon Walter Stewart, 30, had been contesting extradition after he was arrested in Texas last October. After a Texas appellate...

May 2015 Ponzi Scheme Roundup

Below is a summary of the activity reported for May 2015. The reported stories reflect: 7 guilty pleas or convictions in pending cases; over 62 years of newly imposed sentences for people involved in Ponzi schemes; at least 16 new Ponzi schemes involving over $130 million; and an average age of approximately...

Insurance Company and Law Firms to Pay $45 Million to Settle Stanford Lawsuits

A national accounting firm and two law firms will pay $45 million in separate settlements over claims that they knowingly participated and assisted in the massive $7 billion Ponzi scheme perpetrated by Allen Stanford. The settlements mark a much-needed boost for Stanford's victims, who to date have...

Man Who Claimed Holy Spirit Guided Investing Accused of $3.5 Million Ponzi Scheme

A former Massachusetts church elder is accused of defrauding dozens of investors out of at least $3.5 million with the promise of exorbitant returns through a proprietary day-trading system allegedly revealed to him by the Holy Spirit. Charles Erickson, of Uxbridge, Massachusetts, was charged by the...

SEC Seeks Deceased Alleged Ponzi Schemer's Life Insurance Proceeds to Pay Victims

The recent death of a Wisconsin insurance agent accused by the Securities and Exchange Commission of operating a multi-million dollar Ponzi scheme has taken a new twist as authorities seek to use millions of dollars in life insurance policy proceeds to pay back the accused's defrauded victims. Loren...

Miami Investment Adviser Accused of $2 Million Ponzi Scheme Targeting Retired Public Sector Employees

A Miami man is facing civil and criminal fraud charges after authorities say he ran a Ponzi scheme that raised over $2 million from numerous public sector retirees including law enforcement officers and teachers. Phil Donahue Williamson, 48, faces charges from both the Securities and Exchange Commission...

"Brooklyn Madoff" Ponzi Victims Sue Banks for $36 Million

Several dozen victims of a massive Ponzi scheme masterminded by a Brooklyn man dubbed the "Bernie Madoff of Bay Ridge" have filed a lawsuit seeking over $36 million from several financial institutions that allegedly aided the decades-long Ponzi scheme. Over two dozen victims of Philip Barry...

TelexFree Trustee Provides Update On Claims, Losses, And Clawbacks

The bankruptcy trustee tasked with recovering funds to compensate hundreds of thousands investors worldwide who were duped in the massive TelexFree fraud appeared at a Bankruptcy court hearing today where he provided an update on the complexity of the scheme, the estimated losses, and the next steps...

Texas Man Charged With $4.5 Million Oil-and-Gas Ponzi Scheme

A Texas man is facing criminal charges on allegations that he ran a $4.5 million Ponzi scheme through the sale of purported interests in oil and gas wells. William Allen Risinger was charged with three counts of wire fraud and one count of money laundering in an indictment that was filed in May 2015...

Key Player In $150 Million Ponzi Scheme Gets 1-Day Sentence

A California man accused of being a key player in a $150 million Ponzi scheme - allegedly the largest scheme ever uncovered in Orange County, California – will spend one day in jail for his role despite once facing over thirty felony charges. Adam Jay Boskovich, 45, received the sentence after...

Supreme Court Deals $4 Billion Blow to Madoff Recovery Efforts

The Supreme Court refused to consider an appeal brought by the court-appointed bankruptcy responsible for recovering assets for Bernard Madoff's massive Ponzi scheme, instead leaving intact an appellate decision that prevents the recovery of "false profits" by Madoff profiteers beyond the...

Colorado Woman Charged With $7 Million "Triple Algorithm" Ponzi Scheme

North Carolina authorities have filed criminal charges against a Colorado woman on allegations that she operated a massive Ponzi scheme that duped over 10,000 victims out of at least $7 million under the guise that a "lifetime income plan" could deliver annual gains exceeding 700%. Kristine...