Wednesday, September 30, 2015

September 2015 Ponzi Scheme Roundup

Posted by Kathy Bazoian Phelps

    Below is a summary of the activity reported for September 2015. The reported stories reflect: 5 guilty pleas or convictions in pending cases; over 51 years of newly imposed sentences for people involved in Ponzi schemes; at least 3 new Ponzi schemes; and an average age of approximately 52 for the alleged Ponzi schemers. Please feel free to post comments about these or other Ponzi schemes that I may have missed. And please remember that I am just relaying what’s in the news, not writing or verifying it.

    Roger Stanley Bliss, 57, pleaded guilty to charges relating to his attempt to hide a sailboat after he was accused of running a $25 million Ponzi scheme by representing that he was trading exclusively in the shares of Apple. Bliss is also facing charges that he operated an investment club that took in money from about 708 investors, promising returns of up to 300%.

    Charles L. Erickson, 72, was arrested and accused of running a $3.4 million Ponzi scheme that defrauded at least 8 victims. Erickson allegedly took money from fellow members of his Ashland church in Massachusetts, claiming that the Holy Spirit revealed an investment strategy to him.

    Gregory G. Jones resigned as a lawyer in lieu of discipline by the State Bar of Texas. Jones was the subject of a disciplinary proceeding for his role in advising clients to invest in Edwards Exploration LLC and Edwards Operating Co. LLC. Jones represented that he knew the principal of the companies, Spencer Edwards, and that he was familiar with the business ventures. But the businesses were actually running a Ponzi scheme.

    George Lindell, 67, and Holly Hoaeae, 40, were found guilty in connection with a Ponzi scheme called “The Parking Lot” in which 166 people invested over $26 million and lost a net amount of $8.9 million. The scheme was run in connection with the operation of their business, “The Mortgage Store.”

    Stafford S. Maxwell, 46, was sentenced to 3 years and 9 months in prison and ordered to pay about $1.4 in restitution in connection with the Millennium Capital Exchange Inc. Ponzi scheme. Maxwell was the former Chief Executive Officer and former owner of Millennium who defrauded victims out of more than $2 million. The company was supposedly engaged in foreign exchange trading and promised investors returns of 48% to 72%.

    James E. Neilsen, 55, pleaded guilty to charges relating to a Ponzi scheme that defrauded investors out of $1.6 million. Neilsen ran the scheme through Neilsen Financial Services and Ulysses Partners LLC. He promised 9% to 10.5% returns to investors from supposedly investing their money in business ventures, but instead used the money to pay back earlier investors or on himself.

    Gina Palasini was indicted in connection with an alleged Ponzi scheme that defrauded 6 investors out of over $1 million. Palasini is already serving a 10 year prison sentence on related state charges. Palasini continued to sell accident, life and death insurance even after her insurance license was revoked in 2006. Palasini also promised her clients assistance in obtaining Medicaid or Veterans Affairs benefits and encouraged them to invest in annuities, sometimes promising them that they would qualify for benefits and 10% interest.

    Gaeton “Guy” Della Penna, 62, was sentenced to 5 years in prison and ordered to pay $2.8 million in restitution for his role in a Ponzi scheme in which he promised investors a 5% return plus principal repayment after 18 months.

    James Peister, 63, was sentenced to 6 years in prison for running a $17.9 million Ponzi scheme that defrauded 74 investors. Peister had sent fictitious account statements to investors and false financial statements to an independent auditor.

    Trendon Shavers, 33, pleaded guilty to operating a Ponzi scheme that involved the virtual currency, Bitcoin. Shavers ran the scheme through his company, Bitcoin Savings & Trust and claimed that he would pay investors 1% interest on their investment every 3 days, or 7% per week. Shavers had more than 750,000 Bitcoins worth about $4.5 million when he shut down the company in 2012. The SEC charged Shavers and ordered him to pay back $40.7 million in a civil lawsuit.

    Sunil Sharma was sentenced to 33 months in prison for running a Ponzi scheme through his companies, Gold Coast Holding and Safe Harbor Tax Lien Acquisitions. Sharma raised $8.36 million from 32 companies and told investors he would invest in bonds in emerging markets in Brazil, Russia, India, and China. Instead, he engaged in day-trading stock options and spent the investors’ money on a home, a Mediterranean cruise and lease vehicles.

    Jerry Smith, 52, saw his 40 year prison sentenced dismissed by an appellate court. Smith had pleaded guilty to charges relating to the Ponzi scheme run with his business partner, Jasen Snelling. The appellate court concluded that Smith committed one single act of criminal conduct by failing to register as a broker-dealer and that the proper analysis was not the number of times Smith transacted business. The court remanded for the trial court to re-sentence Smith with the court’s calculation to find that the total term Smith may receive is 10 years.

    Dror Soref, 75, was arrested in connection with an alleged Ponzi scheme run through Not Forgotten LLC. Soref, CEO of Skyline Pictures, is a film director known for making Weird Al Yanovic music videos, but is now accused of working with Michelle Kenen Seward, 42, in defrauding investors out of at least $11 million, promising them returns of 10% to 18%. Such returns were also promised by another company run by the two of them called Windsor Pictures LLC. It is estimated that at least 140 victims invested over $21 million with Soref and Steward.
    Frank Spinosa, 54, is scheduled to plead guilty to charges relating to his relationship to Scott Rothstein while he was a vice president at TD Bank. Spinosa was accused of making oral assurances to at least two investors that certain accounts contained hundreds of millions of dollar when these “locked” accounts actually only held about $100. Spinosa was facing many years in prison if convicted on all charges, but may only face a maximum of 5 years for the single count of wire fraud conspiracy.

    Kaveh Vahedi, 53, who was convicted of running a Ponzi scheme through KGV Investments and Countrywide Financial, was sentenced to 18 years in prison. The 18 year sentence was imposed despite the fact that the government was asking for an 8 year sentence and the probation office recommended 10 years. The scheme defrauded 31 investors who invested more than $12 million in supposed development projects on promises of a profit of 50% of their principal investment within 9 months. The sentencing judge call the scheme the “most heartbreaking, vicious fraud ever,” because Vahedi had defrauded cancer victims, the elderly, and others already in financial trouble, convincing them to mortgage their homes in order to invest.

    Charles Wooden, 48, and Hendrickx Toussaint, 44, were sentenced to 7 years and 3 years 10 months in prison, respectively, for their $5 million real estate Ponzi scheme run through Aeon Capital Management LLC. They provided fake documents to investors to conceal that the money was not used to purchase real estate as promised and fake bank account statements to reflect that investors’ money was still in escrow.

    Troy Wragg, 34, Amanda Knorr, 32, and Wayde McKelvy, 52, were charged with running a $54 million green energy Ponzi scheme through Mantria Corp. The SEC had filed a civil action against them and each of them were ordered to pay $37 million in 2012. The scheme promised as returns high as 484% from a green energy technology called “biochar” that would turn trash into fuel and “carbon-negative” housing developments. The scheme raised $54.5 million. Before the Ponzi scheme was shut down, former President Bill Clinton’s Clinton Global Initiative had honored Mantria for its effort to “help mitigate global warming.”

    Joseph Zada, 57, was found guilty of charges relating to a $50 million Ponzi scheme. The SEC had previously obtained final judgments against Zada and his company, Zada Enterprises LLC, in connection with a $27.5 million Ponzi scheme that defrauded at least 60 investors. Zada had promised 7% to 12% interest rates and promised some investors 48% returns in connection with oil-related investments in the Middle East.

    Brian Zuzga, 39, was sentenced to 6 years in prison and ordered to pay $10.7 million in restitution for his role in a Ponzi scheme that defrauded more than 100 victims out of more than $11 million. Zuzga had previously pleaded guilty to running the scheme through Assured Capital Consultants, along with Jenifer E. Hoffman and John C. Boschert.



    Spencer Mitchell Steinberg, 45, and Michael Strubel, 53, are on trial for allegedly using fake contracts with the London 2012 Olympics to defraud £40m from friends and family. The two defendants, along with Jolan Marc Saunders, 39, who has pleaded guilty, told investors that Saunders Electrical Wholesaters Limited supplied electricals including trouser presses and kettles to major hotel chains. It is alleged that instead they used the funds to purchase expensive homes and vehicles.


    Shibonoy Datta and Ashok Saha were arrested in connection with the Rose Valley Ltd. Ponzi scheme.

    Chittaranjan Mohanty, Bikram Pradham and Manas Kanungo were arrested in connection with allegations that they were running a Ponzi scheme through Unique SMCS, a cooperative society that used 700 local youths as agents to collect money from people. Unique SMCS ran 5 schemes and promised investors that they would double their money in 5 years and get 7 times their money in 10 years.

    The Securities and Exchange Board of India imposed a record penalty of 72.7 billion rupees ($1.1 billion) on real estate developer PACL Ltd.

South Africa

    The National Consumer Commission has launched preliminary investigations into the following nine alleged Ponzi schemes: WorldVentures, Kipi aka Mydeposit241, Make Believe, NMT Investments, Instant Wealth Club, MMM South Africa, DIPESA, Sikhese (Pty) Ltd., and the Wealth Creation Club.


    Thirteen defendants appeared in Criminal Court in Bangkok in connection with the alleged scheme of the Ufun Store. The scheme allegedly defrauded about 120,000 people out of more than 20 billion baht. The company had been granted permission to sell herbal drinks, fruit drinks and cosmetics last year, but is believed to have been operating a scheme to bring in new members rather than sell products. The defendants are Apicharat Saenkla, 40, Ratthawit Thiti-arunwat, 34, Chaithorn Thonglorlert, 41, Ritthidej Warong, 39, Monpan Thanabundit, 41, Peeraya Kanphrom, 26, Chotipat Wuthipanpokin, 38, Nipaporn Lamee, 36, Theerawat Patcharasuyayai, 21, Natwaran Uttamakaeo, 24, Chaisong Wanasbodiwong, 36, Kevin Lai, 48, and Yang Yuan Zhao.

    An appellate court upheld a $72 million judgment against Huntington Bancshares Inc. in connection with the Cyberco Holdings Inc. Ponzi scheme. The ruling upheld a bankruptcy court decision that found that Huntington ignored signs of wrongdoing and continued to allow a related company to move money in its accounts. Meoli v. Huntington Nat’l Bank, 2015 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 129909 (W.D. Mich. Sept. 28, 2015).
    The bankruptcy trustee of Fair Finance Company, a company run by Tim Durham, announced his intention to make a first distribution to victims of the Ponzi scheme. The distribution will be $18 million, or about 8% - 9% of the losses in the case. Nearly $230 million of claims were submitted in the bankruptcy case. Durham is serving his 50 year prison sentence and his co-conspirators Jim Cochran and Rick Snow were sentenced to 25 years and 10 years, respectively.

    Cleveland Cavaliers forward Mike Miller filed a lawsuit to recover the balance of his $1.7 million loss from the alleged Ponzi scheme run by Randy Hansen and Vincent Puma through RAHFCO Hedge Funds.

    A lawsuit was filed by about 30 investors against CommunityOne Bank in North Carolina in connection with the $40 million Ponzi scheme run by Keith Franklin Simmons, who was previously sentenced to 40 years in prison. Simmons was sentenced to 40 years after a jury trial last year in which he was found to have defrauded more than 400 investors who placed more than $35 million with Black Diamond.

    The Receiver in the R. Allen Stanford $7 billion Ponzi scheme won a summary judgment finding that 6 investors must return approximately $2 million in profits they received.

    A court approved a settlement between thousands of investors in the Allen Stanford scheme and BDO for the sum of $40 million.

    A class action attorney asked a federal court for permission to sue at least 20,000 net winners in the TelexFree Ponzi scheme. Daniil Shoyfer, a TelexFree promoter, would be the lead class-action defendant.

    3M, a multinational conglomerate ranked No. 101 on the Fortune 500 list, was denied its insurance claim seeking to recover funds in connection with its investment of its employee-benefit plan assets in the Ponzi scheme run by WG Trading Company. Even though 3M recovered all of its money invested through the receivership proceedings, it sought to be paid earning on those investments. A court ruled in favor of the insurance company, finding that 3M owned a limited partnership interest in WG Trading and that it did not own the earnings of WG Trading, so 3M’s insurers are not obligated to compensate 3M for a loss when it never possessed the earnings. 3M Co. v. Nat'l Union Fire Ins. Co., 2015 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 131197 (D. Minn. Sept. 28, 2015).

Monday, August 31, 2015

August 2015 Ponzi Scheme Roundup

Posted by Kathy Bazoian Phelps

    Below is a summary of the activity reported for August 2015. The reported stories reflect: 3 guilty pleas or convictions in pending cases; over 39 years of newly imposed sentences for people involved in Ponzi schemes; at least 3 new Ponzi schemes involving over $143 million; and an average age of approximately 59 for the alleged Ponzi schemers. Please feel free to post comments about these or other Ponzi schemes that I may have missed. And please remember that I am just relaying what’s in the news, not writing or verifying it.

    Bryan Anderson, 41, was sentenced to 7 years and 3 months in prison in connection with a Ponzi scheme to which he had previously pleaded guilty. Anderson defrauded a dozen investors out of more than $3 million. During most of the scheme, Anderson was a registered financial broker working with MetLife Securities and then Pruco Securities.

    Roland Barrera, a bar owner, was ordered to pay a $150,000 penalty for breaking federal regulations when he helped persuade a businessman to invest $3 million in a Ponzi scheme run by Robert Helms and Janniece Kaelin through their company, Vendetta Royalty Partners, Ltd., claiming to have royalties on 2,000 oil and gas wells. The scheme involved as many as 129 investors who invested at least $18 million. Helms and Kaelin were the subject of a summary judgment against them, stripping them of their ability to work in investment industry.

    John R. Burns III, 56, was sentenced to 7 years in prison in connection with a Ponzi scheme run through USA Retirement Management Services. Burns persuaded investors to invest in bogus Turkish bonds. His scheme was part of a large scheme run with Robert Pribilski, 57, and Mahmt Erhan Durmaz, 45, in which they defrauded 120 investors out of $28 million. Pribilski pleaded guilty last year, and Durmaz fled the U.S. in 2010 and is believed to be residing in Turkey.

    Terina Carney aka Teina Humphrey, 49, pleaded guilty to running a Ponzi scheme in which she stole more than $415,000. Carney ran her scheme through Riverside Lease LLC, and investors were promised returns of 10% to 30%.

    Cristal Clark, 41, was acquitted of charges of running a Ponzi scheme through Cay Clubs, and a mistrial was declared as to her husband, Fred “Dave” Clark. Cay Clubs had sold interests in luxury resorts that were to be developed nationwide, promising returns of 15% to 20%. They had raised more than $300 million from approximately 1,400 investors. An SEC action against the Clarks had previously been dismissed as being untimely. Two others involved with Cay Clubs, Barry Graham and Ricky Lynn Stokes, had previously pleaded guilty and received sentences of 5 years each.

    Carlos Garza and his brother, Josh Garza, were sued by the SEC in connection with GAW Miners. GAW is alleged to have violated securities laws through its sale of Hashlet miners and its cryptocurrency, Paycoin. Last year, GAW moved more toward its “Paybase” system of payments and formed strategic partnerships with Walmart and Amazon.

    Richard M. Higgins, was sentenced to 14 years in prison after pleading guilty to charges that he ran a Ponzi scheme through Higgins Capital Management and Higgins Equity Partners. Higgins defrauded investors out of more than $600,000 by assuring them that he was a registered advisor and reporting returns to them of between 18% and 174%. In fact, he experienced losses of between 80% and 91%.

    Irwin Lipkin, 77, was sentenced to 6 months in prison in connection with the Bernard Madoff Ponzi scheme. Lipkin had pleaded guilty to charges relating to the falsification of documents at a time when he was Controller for Madoff’s company. When he left the company, he instructed his successor on how to falsify the records and he also manipulated his own account to retain significant capital gains. Lipkin’s wife also remained on the payroll for many years, even when she was not performing any services.

    James H. Mason, 67, was sentenced to 8 years in prison and ordered to pay $4.3 million in restitution in connection with a $4.7 million Ponzi scheme that defrauded at least 500 investors. The scheme purported to be a foreign exchange investment program.

    Ron Earl McCullough and David Christopher Mayhew had a default judgment entered against them, which provides that they will have to pay $1,223,388.43 in restitution and 42,486,619.87 in civil monetary penalties for operating a foreign exchange Ponzi scheme. McCullough and Mayhew were accused by the CFTC of violating commodities laws in connection with a fraudulent scheme that solicited about $2.3 million from at least 11 victims.

    Steven Palladino, 58, was sentenced to 2 years in prison for violating an asset freeze and other court orders in a civil case brought by the SEC relating to a Ponzi scheme for which he is already serving a 10 to 12 year sentence. Palladino was sentenced last year after pleading guilty to stealing $10 million from investors through his company, Viking Financial Group.

    Wayne Palmer, 60, and his cousin Julieann Palmer Martin, 47, of Utah, were indicted on charges that they ran a Ponzi scheme which defrauded more than 600 investors out of $140 million. They ran the scheme through National Note of Utah, a company that supposedly extended real estate loans, engaged in other real estate activities, operated a mint, and extracted precious metals from mine tailings. The company promised investors consistent returns of 12% per annum.

    Albert Rossini, 67, Babajan Khoshabe, 74, and Anthony Khoshabe, 33, were indicted on allegations that they defrauded at least 15 victims out of $2.9 million. They represented that investors would receive rental income from purchasing purported mortgage notes on apartment buildings in foreclosure, and that they would get title following the foreclosure. Thomas Murray, 61, a licensed Illinois attorney, was also indicted for his alleged role in validating the sale of the mortgage notes through a phone “Guaranty Agreement” that he prepared and gave to Rossini to present to victims. Rossini and Babajan Khoshabe allegedly told prospective investors that Anthony Khoshabe managed the mortgaged properties through his position at Reliant Management, which shared office space with Devon Street Investments Ltd.

    Keith F. Simmons, 50, and Deanna Salazar received one of the largest fines ever handed out by the CFTC. They were fined $76 million for fraudulently soliciting and accepting $40 million from 240 individuals for their off-exchange forex trading program known as Black Diamond. Simmons was sentenced to 40 years in prison and Salazar was sentenced to 4.5 years, and both are currently serving their sentences. The court entered consent orders against Simmons and Salazar and her companies, Life Plus Group LLC and Black Diamond Holdings LLC. Also charged are Bryan Coats and his company, Genesis Wealth Management LLC, and Jonathan Davey, and his companies, Divine Circulation Services LLC, Divine Stewardship LLC, Safe Harbor Ventures Inc., Safe Harbor Wealth Investments Inc., and Safe Harbor Wealth Inc.

    Michael J. Stewart, 68, was convicted in connection with a Ponzi scheme that defrauded 647 investors out of $169 million. Stewart represented to investors that he would acquire distressed apartment buildings that he would flip for a profit. Stewart ran the scheme through Pacific Property Assets with John Packard. Pacific Property had filed for bankruptcy in 2009, listing 647 investors. Packard had pleaded guilty in 2014 and testified against Stewart at trial. Both are scheduled to be sentenced in November.

    Frederick Alan Voight, 58, was the subject of an SEC complaint alleging that Voight raised $114 million through his enterprises, DayStar, FAVA, Rhine, Topside, Intercore, and IRC, to fund a Ponzi scheme. Voight claimed that he was using the money to fund research for public companies and he promised up to 42% annual interest. One investment opportunity supposedly funded a technology called “DADS”, a Driver Alertness Detection System that would warn sleepy drivers.

    William Donnelly Yotty, 69, pleaded guilty to charges in connection with his operation of a $16 million Ponzi scheme through companies he operated under the names Global Capital Associates, Inc., Infostar Systems, Inc., Pacific Financial Solutions, Inc., and The Money People, Inc. The schemes defrauded about 240 investors. Yotty offered investments in corporate debt obligations and in distressed real estate, offering investors annual returns as high as 25%. In a separate scheme that he operated under the name Fortuno, Yotty offered victims the opportunity to purchase foreclosed real estate at below-market prices so that they could supposedly flip the properties at two or three time the purchase price.



    Keith Henry Alexander admitted to engaging in the illegal distribution of securities and unregistered trading in connection with the Ponzi scheme run through The Little Loan Shoppe by Doris Nelson. Alexander raised $14 million from 13 investors.

    Milowe Brost, 61, filed an appeal following his conviction for running a $400 million Ponzi scheme along with Gary Sorenson, 71. The scheme defrauded more than 3,000 investors and was run through their company, Syndicated Gold Depository S.A. They formed an agreement to lend money to Merendon Mining, promising a high rate of return. Victims invested in offshore shell companies marketed by Brost's firms, Capital Alternatives Inc. and Institute for Financial Learning Group of Companies Inc. Both men were sentenced to 12 years in prison.

    Christopher Steeves and his brother, Jeremy Steeves, lost an arbitration in which they were ordered to pay about $658,000 for their role in a Ponzi scheme. The brothers received unlawful referral commissions for recruiting investors into Golden Oaks Enterprises, a company owned by J.C. Lacasse. The brothers also received more than 60% annually on their own investments and secured second mortgages on 18 properties owned by Lacasse’s Rent 2 Own Canada.


    Brighton SPC Fund was taken over by the Cayman Islands Monetary Authority. The fund, believed to be worth $130 million, belonged to Belvedere Group.


    Lu Kuan-wei and Chen Yun-fei were arrested in Taiwan in connection with the alleged Ponzi scheme targeting bitcoin users through a company called MyCoin. Investors were convinced to invest 90 bitcoins ($49,600), and they were to receive a return of .63 BTC per day. They were to receive back their principal after 4 1/2 months, which would be an annual return of 255%.


    Manoj Kumar Sahu, Pintu Saha, and Adhis Haldar were arrested for alleged involvement in Ponzi scheme activities of MPA Agro Animal Projects.

South Africa

    The Financial Services Board provisionally withdrew the license of Ntinga Health and Financial Services following allegations that Ntinga was running a Ponzi scheme. The company promised guaranteed returns of 98% per year. The FSB identified Armstrong Luthando Mazizi as the individual running Ntinga, as well as Geinisiko Mantashe as a signatory on the company’s bank accounts.

    The Financial Services Board provisionally withdrew the license of a foreign exchange brokerage firm called ACM Gold and Trading for its links to a Ponzi scheme. ACM held short-term investment accounts for Platinum Forex, whose assets were frozen last month. Platinum Forex was run by pastor Colin Davids, who promised returns of up to 84% by trading funds on the forex market.

    Sergey Mavrodi, previously convicted of fraud in Russia, has launched a new online allegedly fraudulent scheme in South Africa. The scheme, called MMM like his predecessor scheme, offers returns of 30% per month. The website contains the following message: “This is the first sprout of something new in the modern soulless and ruthless world of greed and hard cash. The goal here is not the money. The goal is to destroy the world's unjust financial system.” The website also describes the system as a “technical basic program, which helps millions of participants worldwide to find those who need help, and those who are ready to provide help for free.”


    The motion of Associated Bank to dismiss the complaint of the receiver of Trevor Cook was denied. The lawsuit alleges that the Bank is liable in connection with Cook’s $194 million scheme. The bank had tried, unsuccessfully, to dismiss the receiver’s suit on in pari delicto and res judicata grounds. Cook had promised risk-free returns to over 700 investors in commodities and futures trading, raising more than $200 million.

    Federal prosecutors have challenged a court order directing them to turnover the tax returns of wealthy investors who were defrauded in the alleged $190 million Ponzi scheme of Ramon DeSage, 64, that he ran through his company, Cadeau Express. DeSage contends that the investors failed to report to the IRS the cash that he paid back to investors. He wants to use the tax returns to attack their credibility. Prosecutors say that the court order “order authorizes a rank fishing expedition that puts the victims' sensitive financial data in the hands of the defendant, effectively victimizing them a second time.”

    Henry J. Haff and Diane M. Lis Haff were not permitted to take an additional $731,000 tax deduction relating to funds they claimed were owing to them from a Ponzi scheme called GSH Development LLC. They argued that the funds were never included in income.

    A settlement was documented in connection with the Bernard Madoff Ponzi scheme in which Citco Group Ltd. agreed to pay $125 million to settle claims brought by Fairfield Greenwich Ltd., one of the Madoff feeder funds. Fairfield alleged that Citco had failed to properly administer funds that ended up being invested in the Madoff scheme. About 3,000 investors claim an interest through Fairfield.

    California Polytechnic State University has agreed to pay $480,000 to have the name of Al Moriarty removed from a 53-foot advertisement on the scoreboard in the school’s football stadium. Moriarty was previously convicted or running a $22 million Ponzi scheme. Moriarty used his company, Moriarty Enterprises, to solicit investor into his scheme promising 10% returns from a program that provided home loans to educators. Moriarty was known for his philanthropy and had donated $625,000 to Cal Poly in exchange for the advertisement in Cal Poly’s football stadium.

    A court dismissed a lawsuit against GE Capital Corp. that arose from the Tom Petters Ponzi scheme. The trustee of Ark Discovery, a lender to Petters, had sued GE Capital alleging that it had aided and abetted Petters’ fraud.

    FSC Securities Corp. was found liable for $1.28 million in an arbitration brought by investors who were defrauded in the Ponzi scheme run by Aubrey Lee Price. FSC was one of the broker dealers involved in the scheme, and investors had alleged that FSC failed to supervise brokers who sold the investors “unspecified fraudulent securities as part of a Ponzi scheme.”

    About 14,000 victims in the TelexFree Ponzi scheme received a distribution from a $3.5 million fund that was set up as a result of a settlement between the Massachusetts Securities Division and Fidelity Co-Operative Bank.

    The ZeekRewards receiver made a third distribution to victims of the scheme for 489.2 million. The raises the total amount distributed to $24605 million. The scheme is believed to have raised money from at least 2.2 million customers.