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CFTC Charges Investment Firm with Fraud in Digital Asset-Linked Ponzi Scheme

(HedgeCo.Net) The Commodity Futures Trading Commission has announced the filing of a civil enforcement action in the U.S. District Court for the District of Colorado against Breonna Clark, of Denver, Colorado, and Venture Capital Investments Ltd., a Colorado limited liability company, charging them with fraud and failing to register with the CFTC.

The complaint charges that the defendants solicited U.S. residents to trade foreign currency (forex) contracts as well as Bitcoin and other digital assets through a commodity pool operated by the defendants. In connection with these solicitations, the defendants collected $534,829 from approximately seventy-two individuals. Rather than trade, the defendants used at least $418,000 of the funds for personal expenses—including acquiring a BMW automobile—and to make Ponzi-type payments to other pool participants.

The complaint also alleges that the defendants fraudulently solicited prospective pool participants by misleading customers about their experience, expertise, and investment track record while promising future profitability trading forex and digital assets. The complaint further alleges that to conceal their misappropriation, the defendants sent pool participants false account statements, which purported to show trading gains. In addition, the defendants were charged with failing to appropriately register with the Commission pursuant to the Commodity Exchange Act and regulations.

In its litigation against the defendants, the CFTC seeks restitution to defrauded customers, disgorgement of ill-gotten gains, civil monetary penalties, permanent registration and trading bans, and a permanent injunction against future violations of the Commodity Exchange Act, as charged.

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