A StarTribune article says that Trevor Cook’s currency program fraud was the second-largest Ponzi scheme in Minnesota history. The article too mentions that prosecutors have accused one of the scheme’s participants, Gerald Durand, of a murder-for-insurance plot.  The suspected plot surfaced at the “Government’s Motion For An Evidentiary Hearing Regarding Durand“, filed December

A whistleblower claim against Deutsche Bank and HSBC’s settlement with U.S. Treasury:

As demonstrated by the $104 million dollar IRS award to UBS Swiss bank whistleblower Bradley Birkenfeld, one may hit a home run by blowing the whistle.  Some however, face criminal charges or other extraordinary difficulties because of their whistleblowing.

The New York City Bar Association seminar “The Ins & Outs Of Recovering Assets

Peter Madoff’s $4 million dollar co-op and the effort to recover assets from Peregrine Financial Group, Inc.

  1. The NYC Park Avenue co-op which belonged to Bernard Madoff’s younger brother Peter, has just been listed for sale.  The $4 million dollar co-op is being sold as part of the asset forfeiture agreement connected to Peter

Secreting Ponzi scheme proceeds and the conviction of three former money managers:

  1. Secreting Assets Without A Border Trace” highlights methods determined criminals employ to conceal their assets from domestic authorities and everyone else.  It supplies the fact pattern of a securities fraudster who conceivably could have concealed Ponzi scheme proceeds by utilizing offshore

The New York Post and Bloomberg wrote last month about the appeal pending in Cohen v. S.A.C. Trading Corp., et. al., (11-1390-cv). The Cohen appeal is over the trial court’s March 30, 2011 dismissal of Patricia Cohen’s Second Amended Complaint.  The Second Amended Complaint accused Ms. Cohen’s ex-husband, (billionaire hedge fund manager Steven Cohen), of tax fraud, money laundering, securities fraud and other alleged crimes.

This complaint also pleaded civil RICO, common law fraud, breach of fiduciary duty and unjust enrichment claims because Mr. Cohen had purportedly hidden marital assets from Ms. Cohen during their 1990 divorce.  The gravamen of the complaint was that Mr. Cohen supposedly defrauded Ms. Cohen out of marital assets which she was arguably entitled to recover.

According to the complaint, Mr. Cohen had invested $8,745,169 dollars in co-op apartment conversions, with former attorney Brett K. Lurie.  By January 1987, Mr. Lurie had allegedly repaid Mr. Cohen $5.5 million of the $8,745,169 dollars.  The complaint claims the $5.5 million was a marital asset hidden by Mr. Cohen and omitted from his 1988 Statement of Financial Condition.  This financial statement identified the $8,745,169 dollar investment with Mr. Lurie as a “non-liquid asset”:

(To Read The Entire Financial Statement, Click On The Highlighted Excerpt)


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Todays “Asset Search News Roundup” mentions whistleblower programs:

  1. An Asset Search Via Whistleblowers & Other Tipsters comments on IRS and SEC efforts to sniff out fraudulently concealed assets with the help of reward programs.  Forbes’ March 2nd article IRS Whistleblowers See Little Reward, also describes these programs.  The article compares one to the other

At “Hockey bid a factor in Beckman’s Ponzi trial”, the StarTribune analyzes the Second Superseding Indictment filed in the criminal prosecution against Jason Bo Beckman, Gerald Durand and Patrick Kiley.  This StarTribune article explains the three are accused of money laundering and other alleged crimes arising out of Trevor Cook’s securities fraud which was one of the biggest Ponzi schemes in Minnesota history.  The article too reveals that the Second Superseding Indictment differs from two earlier ones.

This was true because the Second Superseding Indictment appears to accuse Mr. Beckman of using Ponzi scheme proceeds as part of an alleged attempt to buy an ownership interest in the National Hockey League’s Minnesota Wild team.  There is however, another difference between the Second Superseding Indictment and the previous indictments in this matter.  Unlike the earlier indictments, Counts 24-25 at pp. 34-36 of the Second Superseding Indictment, basically accuse Mr. Durand of using a nominee’s bank account at Wells Fargo to secretly convert nearly $22,000 in Swiss francs to U.S. dollars.

This supposed currency conversion had conceivably caused Wells Fargo to unknowingly file Currency Transaction Reports with material omissions in them, about who participated in said conversion.  Although suspected crimes related to Currency Transaction Reports are typically charged under 31 U.S.C. §§ 5322 &/or 5324, Counts 24-25 of the Second Superseding Indictment allege that Mr. Durand concealed material facts and / or made false statements to the Federal Government in violation of 28 U.S.C. §1001.


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A February 3rd civil complaint filed against Forex dealer Peregrine Financial Group, (“PFG”), alleges “PFG ignored or failed to discern a myriad of objective red flags of fraud…” Complaint at pp. 5-6 ¶12.  The complaint asserted a $48 million dollar claim under Minnesota’s fraudulent conveyance law and it was filed by Receiver