Government Focuses on Personal Gain in Backdating Trial

As the United States government prepares for the beginning on Tuesday, March 16, 2010, of the trial of Bruce Karatz, the former CEO of KB Home, on charges stemming from his backdating of stock option bonuses, it is focusing on proving his motive, namely personal gain. The government has alleged that Karatz fraudulently received millions […]

Investigations of Toyota Begin

Reports are beginning to surface that Toyota has received a grand jury subpoena from a federal grand jury considering possible criminal charges and a document request from the Securities and Exchange Commission. The investigations apparently revolve around safety issues, including sudden acceleration, leading to the company’s recall of more than 8 million vehicles. Among the […]

DOJ Charges West Palm Beach Man with Telephone “Cramming”

A federal grand jury in Florida has voted an indictment against Willoughby Farr of West Palm Beach charging him in a telephone cramming scheme. “Cramming” occurs when a telephone customer is billed for services that he did not order or use. According to Department of Justice officials, it is a type of consumer fraud that […]

Federal Authorities Foil Boston Area Affinity Scheme

Agents of the Federal Bureau of Investigation arrested Richard Elkinson at a casino in Mississippi yesterday. He is charged with operating a Ponzi scheme that defrauded more than 130 investors out of more than $29 million. Federal prosecutors in Boston filed the charges, which include mail fraud. The government alleges that Elkinson gave investors promissory […]

Property Owners Sue Credit Suisse for Fraud

Owners of property at four luxury ski and/or golf resorts have sued Credit Suisse for $24 billion. The class action civil suit alleges that Credit Suisse engaged in conspiracy, wire and mail fraud, racketeering, and money laundering. The complaint alleges that Credit Suisse engaged in a predatory loan scheme designed to load the developments with […]

Another Huge Ponzi Scheme, Another Conviction

In the aftermath of Bernard Madoff’s $50 or $60 billion Ponzi scheme, mere thefts of one or a few billion dollars lose the ability to shock. Nevertheless, there seems to be no end to gigantic Ponzi scheme thefts. The most recent news comes from Minneapolis, Minnesota, where federal prosecutors yesterday won conviction on all 20 […]

South Florida Attorney Charged in Massive Ponzi Scheme

The United States Attorney for the Southern District of Florida has charged Scott Rothstein, a Fort Lauderdale attorney, with operating a $1.2 billion fraud. The criminal information alleges that Rothstein and others committed racketeering violations, money laundering, and wire and mail fraud violations. The government alleges that Rothstein used his now defunct law firm, Rothstein, […]

Federal Authorities Seek Top Russian Mobster on Fraud Charges

Federal investigators are seeking reputed Russian crime boss Semion Mogilevich on a 45 count indictment charging Mogilevich and others with racketeering (RICO), securities fraud, wire fraud, mail fraud, and money laundering. The charges allege that Mogilevich owned a company called YBM, which purportedly manufactured magnets. YBM was a public company traded on the Ontario, Canada, […]

Florida Political Fundraiser Indicted

A Broward County ophthalmologist was indicted by a federal grand jury in the Southern District of Florida for diverting funds intended for lobbying and campaign contributions to his personal use. The indictment accuses Alan Mendelsohn, M.D., with diverting to his personal use hundreds of thousands of dollars from political action committees he had set up. […]

Court Looks to Relationship of Parties to Determine Existence of Investment Contract

In a case decided June 11, 2008, the Second Circuit has added clarification to the Supreme Court’s definition of an “investment contract” as explained in SEC v. J.W. Howey, Co., 328 U.S. 293 (1946). In U.S. v. Leonard, the court determined that courts should analyze the investment relationship beyond the formal terms of an agreement […]