TAG | International Consultants Ponzi Scheme
Comments off · Posted by Securities Lawyer in FINRA
In a May 24th, 2012, article from Ft. Lauderdale’s Sun-Sentinel, Jon Burstein writes that an investment adviser from Ft. Lauderdale, and others, exploited trust and friendships within the Ft. Lauderdale gay community of Wilton Manors to help fuel a multimillion-dollar investment fraud, according a lawsuit brought this week by a group of investors.
There were fourteen residents of Broward County who alleged fell prey to accused Ponzi schemer George Elia. A well-known figure in Wilton Manors, Jim Ellis, and his daughter, Janet Ellis, vouched for Elia’s success as a day trader. These investors lost about $2.5 million to Elia, who is now in federal lockup facing a wire fraud charge.
Burstein writes that Elia fled to the Mediterranean island of Cyprus, where he was born, in January and appeared to be out of the reach of U.S. authorities. But in March, he flew back to Las Vegas to find U.S. marshals waiting for him at the airport. The SEC has also filed a civil lawsuit against him accusing him of raising more than $11 million using lies and bogus financial statements.
The Sun-Sentinel article adds that this latest lawsuit alleges the Ellises provided Elia with access to the Wilton Manors community: Jim Ellis was active in the nightlife scene and Janet Ellis worked as the property manager of Wilton Station condo development.
“Each of the plaintiffs was courted by Jim and Janet and regaled with false stories/demonstrations of a lavish lifestyle made possible by Jim and Janet’s supposed investments with Elia,” according to the lawsuit filed Tuesday.
Ellis said in a February interview that he was a victim of Elia like all the other investors.
According to the court records, Elia funneled at least $2.3 million from International Consultants bank accounts into companies controlled by him and his wife, Darlene, and withdrew at least $242,000 in cash in 2010 and 2011.
Securities Lawyer, Lars K. Soreide, of Soreide Law Group, PLLC, has represented clients nationwide. If you or a family member have sustained investment losses due to your stock broker or financial advisor’s recommendations, call for a free consultation on how to potentially recover your losses. To speak with an attorney call 888-760-6552, or visit our website at: http://www.securitieslawyer.com.
Soreide Law Group, PLLC., representing investors nationwide before FINRA the Financial Industry Regulatory Authority.
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