The U.S. Commodity Futures Trading Commission (CFTC) announced that a court in Illinois has approved a permanent injunction against a Chicago-area trader for forex and commodity fraud. The court ordered the defendant Dro Kholamian and his company Blue Star Trading LLC to pay $377,000 for fraud and misappropriation of client funds.
The court said the defendants also failed to register the company with the CFTC as an associated person and as a commodity trading advisor.
Based on the findings, the defendants solicited and accepted $995,000 from clients for forex and futures trading via accounts managed by Blue Star. The said fraudulent act occurred between January 2013 and November 2018.
CFTC Has Placed A Permanent Trading Ban On The Defendants
Through Kholamian’s social contacts in the U.S. and his affiliation with his American church, he convinced some clients to invest in the company. The court held that the defendants used the funds to pay other clients in a Ponzi scheme-like way while using some of the funds for business and personal expenses.
According to the CFTC, the defendants returned $768,000 to clients and stole $227,000, using the funds to fund his business and personal life.
Apart from the $227,000 restitution required from the defendant and his company, they have also been charged $150,000 as a civil monetary penalty. Additionally, the defendants have been permanently prohibited from further violations of the Act and CFTC regulations. This includes permanent trading and registration bans on the defendants.
CFTC Intensifies Enforcement Actions
The CFTC has been very busy lately. The regulator recently filed a civil enforcement action to charge four operators of a $44 million Ponzi scheme.
The accused – Gregory Aggesen of New York, Marquis Egerton of North Carolina, Jatin Patel of India, and Dwayne Golden of Florida – were involved in the Bitcoin scam.
According to the CFTC, the defendants promoted their fraudulent activities through the websites Ecoinplus and Empowercoin. They were accused of soliciting $44 million from clients and diverting most of the funds for other purposes.