December 21, 2017 / 5:46 PM / a year ago

US SEC charges Florida-based fund owner over $1.2 bln Ponzi scheme

WASHINGTON, Dec 21 (Reuters) - The U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission has charged a Florida-based group of unregistered investment companies and its owner for allegedly operating a $1.2 billion Ponzi scheme that targeted seniors among other investors, the agency said on Thursday.

Woodbridge Group of Companies and its owner, Robert Shapiro, had allegedly “defrauded more than 8,400 investors in unregistered Woodbridge funds” and “swindled seniors into a business model built on lies” using “aggressive tactics,” Stephanie Avakian, co-director of SEC’s Enforcement Division, said in a statement. (Reporting by Susan Heavey; Writing by Katanga Johnson; Editing by Tim Ahmann)

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