Promises of 15% Returns in Government and Distressed Securities Alleged to be Fraudulent
The Securities and Exchange Commission announced that on July 28, 2000, the Honorable Kenneth L. Ryskamp, United States District Judge for the Southern District of Florida, entered a summary judgment against a group of defendants permanently enjoining them from violating the registration and anti-fraud provisions of the federal securities laws, namely Sections 5(a), 5(c) and 17(a) of the Securities Act of 1933 (“Securities Act”) and Section 10(b) of the Securities Exchange Act of 1934 (“Exchange Act”) and Rule 10b-5 thereunder.
The judgment also orders defendants to disgorge, jointly and severally, $17 million in ill-gotten gains and to pay civil penalties.
In the underlying complaint, the SEC alleged that the the defendants made material misrepresentations and omissions in connection with the sale of at least $17 million in investment contracts to the investing public. The contracts promised investors returns of between 9.25% to 15% annually, depending upon the amount invested. The complaint further alleges that Chemical represented to investors that their funds would be used to purchase U.S. Treasury notes and distressed properties and that the investment was 100% guaranteed through a security bond issued by U.S. Guarantee.
According to the SEC’s complaint, Chemical has not purchased any U.S. treasury notes or distressed properties, and investor funds are not secured as promised. Instead, the complaint alleges that the defendants misappropriated millions of dollars in investor monies and expatriated them to offshore bank accounts. The complaint alleges that in a classic Ponzi scheme fashion, Chemical used new investor funds to pay interest to existing investors. The complaint further alleges that the defendants made material misrepresentations and omissions to investors concerning, among other things, the assets of U.S. Guarantee and the background of its principals.
SEC V. CHEMICAL TRUST, ET. AL., Case No. 00-8015-CIV-RYSKAMP (S.D. Fla.)
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Mark J. Astarita, Esq. is a securities lawyer who represents investors, financial professionals and firms in litigation, arbitration and regulatory matters across the country. He is a partner in the national securities law firm of Sallah Astarita & Cox, LLC and can be reached by email at firstname.lastname@example.org or by phone at 212-509-6544.
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Mark Astarita is a nationally recognized securities attorney, who represents investors, financial professionals and firms in securities litigation, arbitration and regulatory matters, including SEC and FINRA investigations and enforcement proceedings.
He is a partner in the national securities law firm Sallah Astarita & Cox, LLC, and the founder of The Securities Law Home Page - SECLaw.com, which was one of the first legal topic sites on the Internet. It went online in 1995 and is updated daily with news, commentary and securities law related links.