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Screenshot of a breaking news alert e-mail from Q2 2017
The U.S. Commodity Futures Trading Commission (CFTC) announced that Judge James I. Cohn of the U.S. District Court for the Southern District of Florida entered final default judgments against Relief Defendants Westward International Ltd. and Coucarin Holdings Ltd., both of Deerfield Beach, Florida.
The Default Judgment Orders, both entered on March 23, 2017, require Westward and Coucarin to disgorge ill-gotten client funds in the amounts of $211,160 and $1,565,480, respectively.
Both Default Judgment Orders arise from a CFTC enforcement anti-fraud action filed against Defendants Neil Pecker and Vision Financial Partners, LLC and Relief Defendants Prometheus Enterprises, Inc., GDCM Trust, Westward, and Coucarin on February 16, 2016.
On March 9, 2017, the court entered a Consent Order of Permanent Injunction against Neil Pecker and Vision Financial Partners, LLC and Relief Defendants Prometheus Enterprises, Inc., and GDCM Trust.
The Court’s Findings
The Default Judgment Orders find that Pecker and Vision fraudulently solicited approximately $3 million from over 120 members of the public in the U.S. and Canada to trade off-exchange binary options.
The Default Judgment Orders also find that, rather than trade binary options on behalf of their clients, the Defendants misappropriated almost $2 million of client funds, and diverted those client funds to Relief Defendants, including Westward and Coucarin.
The court also found that Westward and Coucarin did not provide any legitimate services nor had any legitimate entitlement or interest to the client funds, and must disgorge those funds.
The CFTC cautions that orders requiring repayment of funds to victims may not result in the recovery of any money lost because the wrongdoers many not have sufficient funds or assets.