The Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) has charged Indian American Niket Shah of New Jersey with stealing more than $250,000 in a Ponzi scheme and was ordered a preliminary injunction and asset freeze, according to a PTI report.
According to the SEC’s complaint, Shah used Spark Trading Group to defraud more than 15 investors, including his friends and family, by lying about his success as a trader and said that he was going to use that money and altering financial statements to make the funds appear profitable when they were actually losing money.
The PTI reported that the complaint alleges that Shah promised investors’ monthly returns, guaranteeing no losses however, ended up using that money for his own benefit and when the investors sought their money back, he lied saying that the money had been frozen by government agencies, including the SEC.
“Fraudsters who swindle their friends and colleagues using doctored financial statements and outright lies should expect the Commission and its staff to act swiftly and decisively, as we have here today,” Melissa Hodgman, the Associate Director of the SEC’s Enforcement Division told PTI.
SEC is requiring that Spark Trading and Shah return the money lost while they requested for a preliminary injunction, asset freeze, order against the destruction of documents and an accounting of all money received from investors.