Relying on a get-rich-quick foreign currency investment pitch anointed with a Christian spin, Georgian E.A. Gresham hit up 75 marks for $15 million. The U.S. Commodity Futures Trading Commission took the mini Madoff to federal court in a civil suit filed last week.
The Georgia paper The Citizen reports:
CFTC is seeking a variety of civil penalties and remedies in U.S. District Court for the Northern District of Georgia in Newnan. The CFTC complaint, filed July 2 alleges that Gresham’s “massive Ponzi scheme” began in January 2004, and continued up until this year.
His gimmick was “trading off-exchange foreign currency contracts (forex).” Gresham allegedly claimed to prospective customers that he was successful trading forex because the “Lord had blessed him,” investigators said.
Targeting church friends, Gresham would invest some of the money he took in and invest it poorly in the forex market and use the rest to wine and dine clients to convince them he was legit. He also told his victims their money was insured by the federal government. Wholly crap.
Feds say friendship plus faith plus fraud equaled $15 million Ponzi scheme in PTC [TheCitizen]