California Woman Pleads Guilty to $2.2 Million Ponzi Scheme

A California woman admitted to masterminding a Ponzi scheme that bilked investors out of at least $2.2 million. Celia Gallardo, 42, pled guilty to a single count of wire fraud stemming from her role in the scheme. She was arrested earlier this year in July after a grand jury returned a sixteen-count...

Authorities Charge Three With $28 Million Ponzi Scheme That Targeted Retirees

Authorities charged three men with operating a massive Ponzi scheme that targeted retirees and raked in nearly $30 million. Robert C. Pribilski, 54, Mahmut Erhan Durmaz, 42, and John T. Burns III, 53, were each charged with multiple criminal fraud counts, with Pribilski and Durmaz each charged with five...

Former Attorney Pleads Guilty To $7.8 Million Ponzi Scheme

A Houston man admitted that he operated a Ponzi scheme that defrauded victims out of at least $7.8 million. Billy Frank Davis, 67, a former attorney, attracted potential investors by claiming he was a successful real estate investor. Pleading guilty last week to a single count of wire fraud, Davis admitted...

UBS Subsidiary to Pay $100M to Settle Libor Manipulation Claims

NEW HAVEN, Conn. — (Mealey’s) UBS Securities Japan Co. Ltd. will pay a $100 million fine as part of a plea agreement with the U.S. government to end a criminal suit alleging that UBS Japan illegally manipulated the London Interbank Offered Rate (Libor), according to court documents filed...

$1 Billion High-Yield Investment Fraud Leads Three Investment Advisers to Prison

Three former investment advisers – William J. Ferry, a former stock broker and investment adviser; Dennis J. Clinton, a former real estate investment manager; and Paul R. Martin, a former senior vice president and managing director of Bankers Trust – have been sentenced to prison for their...

28 Investors Defrauded in $18 Million Ponzi Scheme, Feds Charge

Over the course of about three years, from August 2010 to November 2013, Louis J. Spina collected $18 million from 28 investors by representing that he would invest their funds through his business, LJS Trading LLC, using algorithmic computer software, and that the investors would receive guaranteed...

5 Years After Madoff: Long Island Man Charged with Orchestrating a $5 Million Ponzi Scheme

Almost five years to the day after Bernard Madoff was arrested in Manhattan, federal prosecutors in New York – yes, in New York – have charged a man with wire and mail fraud for allegedly operating a Ponzi scheme. The indictment alleged that Rocco, while acting as the president of a soccer...

After Targeting the Terminally Ill and the Elderly, Estate Planning CEO and Employee Head to Prison

He saw “death as a holiday.” He targeted the terminally ill and the elderly. He stole millions of dollars. Federal prosecutors say that Joseph A. Caramadre, the president, chief executive officer, and majority owner of Estate Planning Resources in Cranston, R.I., did all this – and...

The Case of the Counterfeit Wine

Financial fraud comes in all sizes and types. Including, it now turns out, in counterfeit wine. Wine dealer Rudy Kurniawan has been found guilty by a jury in Manhattan federal court for engaging in a scheme to manufacture and sell counterfeit bottles of purportedly rare and expensive wine for millions...

A Clue About #8 in Financial Fraud Law for the Year: Look at Bryan Cave’s Next Firm-Wide Leader

As the Financial Fraud Law Blog continues its countdown of the Top 10 in Financial Fraud Law for the year, we are going to begin with a clue: Bryan Cave. Give up? The clue is relevant to our Top 10 list because the international law firm has just named its next global chair: Therese D. Pritchard...

Not Dead: Former Bank Director Aubrey Lee Price. But, Under Arrest

Aubrey Lee Price, a former director of Montgomery Bank & Trust (“MB&T”) in Ailey, Georgia, is not dead after all. Well more than a year ago, Price sent acquaintances a suicide note stating that he planned to kill himself by throwing himself off a high speed ferry boat in Florida...

6 Year Fraud by CFO Who Embezzled $5.7 Million, Prosecutors Contend

Gregg Pierleoni was the chief financial officer of a moving and storage company based in Westchester, New York, from 1987 to April 2013. Now, he is charged with embezzling over $5.7 million from the company over a six year period. According to prosecutors, Pierleoni took funds from the moving company’s...

How Tech Support Refund Scams Work – and How to Avoid This Financial Fraud

So-called “tech support refund scams” are a new twist on an old fraud, and they often manage to defraud honest consumers. But, there are ways to avoid being the subject of this form of financial fraud. Tech support scams try to gain consumers’ trust and access to their computers...

Oil Services Company’s Ex-General Counsel Pleads Guilty to Bribery and Fraud

Two former chief executive officers of PetroTiger Ltd. – a British Virgin Islands oil and gas company with operations in Colombia and offices in New Jersey – have been charged for their alleged participation in a scheme to pay bribes to foreign government officials in violation of the Foreign...

Quoting E-Mails, Government Charges 3 Former Rabobank Traders with Manipulating Yen Libor

Two former Japanese Yen derivatives traders at Rabobank and the trader responsible for setting Rabobank’s Yen London InterBank Offered Rate (LIBOR) have been charged as part of the Justice Department’s ongoing criminal investigation into the alleged manipulation of LIBOR. And, once again...

Former Virginia Governor and His Wife Are Charged with Corruption

A federal grand today has returned a 14-count indictment against former Virginia Governor Robert F. McDonnell and former First Lady Maureen G. McDonnell for allegedly participating in a scheme to violate federal public corruption laws. The indictment, returned in the Eastern District of Virginia,...

Three Charged in Alleged Widespread Corruption Schemes at US Military Base

Three Georgia men have been charged in a 51-count indictment for their alleged participation in fraud and corruption schemes at the Marine Corps Logistics Base (MCLB) in Albany, Georgia. Federal prosecutors assert that the U.S. government lost millions of dollars as a result. Christopher Whitman,...

Financial Fraudster Guilty of Conspiring to Kill Judge Who Sentenced Him

First, he committed a multi-million dollar fraud involving the telemarketing of coins. Then, he was sentenced to 15 years in prison for that financial fraud. Now, he has been convicted of conspiring to murder the Assistant U.S. Attorney who prosecuted him, and the U.S. District Court Judge who sentenced...

‘SpyEye’ Creator Pleads Guilty to Conspiracy to Commit Wire and Bank Fraud

Aleksandr Andreevich Panin, a Russian national also known as “Gribodemon” and “Harderman,” has pleaded guilty to conspiracy to commit wire and bank fraud for his role as the primary developer and distributor of the malicious software known as “SpyEye,” which, according...

Prosecutors’ Rush to Join Private Law Firms Accelerates

The wave of financial fraud prosecutors joining private law firms is continuing – in fact, it appears to be accelerating. Consider that, in just the past couple of days, David Meister, who ran the enforcement unit at the Commodity Futures Trading Commission, joined Skadden, Arps, Slate...

Small Town Texas Police Chief Pleads Guilty to Federal Charges for Immigration Fraud

"The man hired eight years ago to launch the Jarrell Police Department is scheduled to appear in federal court Friday, accused of using his post to collect money from people in the country illegally. Federal charging documents say Andres Tomas Gutierrez took payments ranging from $10,000 to $40...

Financial Fraud Law Quiz: New Jersey Mayors Who Have Been Convicted or Pleaded Guilty in Corruption Cases

With the bribery, fraud, and extortion conviction last week of Tony Mack, the mayor of Trenton, New Jersey, the Financial Fraud Law Blog and the Financial Fraud Law Report thought we would ask our readers if they could identify the communities in New Jersey that have had mayors convicted or have had...

Stamford Attorney Admits Role in $7 Million Mortgage Fraud Scheme

Christopher Brecciano, an attorney in Stamford, Connecticut, has pleaded guilty in Bridgeport federal court to conspiring to defraud financial institutions through an extensive mortgage fraud scheme that involved dozens of Connecticut properties. According to court documents and statements made in...

Disability Doctor Peter J. Lesniewski Sentenced to 8 Years in Prison for His Role in Long Island Railroad Fraud

Peter J. Lesniewski, a Board-certified orthopedist, has been sentenced in Manhattan federal court to eight years in prison for his role in the alleged massive fraud scheme in which Long Island Railroad (LIRR) workers claimed to be disabled upon early retirement so that they could receive disability benefits...

Cay Clubs Executives Arrested In Central America To Face U.S. Obstruction And Fraud Charges

Just weeks after a Florida federal judge dismissed the Securities and Exchange Commission's civil enforcement action accusing five executives of a failed real estate company of operating a $300 million Ponzi scheme, the Department of. Justice announced that two of the executives had been arrested...