More than 50 people scammed through a commodity pool in Connecticut
The Commodity Futures Trading Association (CFTC) has announced today that it has obtained a court order against Feisal Sharif, operating through his commodity pool First Financial LLC in Branford, Connecticut. The restitution pronounced by the court amounts to $2.2 million plus $900,000 civil monetary penalty accompanied with the usual ban from trading and registration under the Commodity Exchange Act.
Between January 2007 and September 2012 mr Sharif has solicited and accepted more than $5,4 million dollars from at least 50 customers to engage in trading activity through the commodity pool under which he was operating. As it turns out he was trading only a portion of the funds appropriated to him and engaged instead in an outright Ponzi scheme.
During the period mr Sharif sustained significant losses while he used the majority of newly procured funds to pay “returns” to previous investors. As you might already be suspecting he also used a portion of the funds for personal use. First Financial LLC was never registered with the CFTC as a commodity pool operator and there is an ongoing criminal action against the perpetrator.
It’s been almost 100 years since a frequently used practice has been notoriously named after Charles Ponzi and the practice never gets old. The digital technology era is not making the prevention of such endeavors any easier as fraudsters come up with creative new ways to falsify statements and documents to misrepresent returns to their fellow investors.
We are reminding our readers once again to remain vigilant and conduct thorough checks with corresponding regulatory bodies before investing their hard earned cash.
For the full press release visit CFTC’s website.