Federal prosecutors in Texas have charged the CEO of AriseBank with securities fraud. According to the indictment, the man defrauded bank investors out of more than $4 million.
The man faces three counts each of investment fraud and wire fraud. The man promoted the bank as the first decentralized cryptocurrency banking platform. According to the defendant, the bank worked with a number of digital currencies. He claimed that the bank offered FDIC-insured depositor accounts and a range of traditional banking services. He also said that the bank offered Visa-branded credit and debit cards. In addition, the man told investors that the bank had raised more than $300 million to support the bank’s initial coin offering (ICO). All of these statements were false. Further, the State of Texas had not authorized the bank to conduct business in that state.
Investors could register to participate in the ICO simply by providing an email address at the bank’s website. In violation of US banking laws and regulations, the bank required no other information about the depositor. Registered investors could choose to invest in a number of digital cryptocurrencies.
The man compounded the fraud by telling investors in January that the ICO had raised $600M to date, and expected to be the first billion-dollar ICO in history. By the time of that information release, the State of Texas had issued a cease and desist order. Later that month, the Securities and Exchange Commission charged the bank with a host of securities fraud crimes.
Securities fraud attorney
When you face federal charges related to investment fraud, hire an experienced securities fraud attorney like Robert Helfend. Mr. Helfend takes securities fraud cases in any federal circuit in the United States. He also takes state-level cases in Los Angeles County and throughout Southern California.
When you face federal charges, an experienced federal defense attorney is an essential part of your defense. Don’t assume that you should plead guilty in federal court. Although federal attorneys have a high conviction rate, a guilty plea is not always your best bet. Hire an aggressive, experienced federal defense attorney when your freedom is at stake.
Contact Robert Helfend or call toll-free at (800) 834-6434, (310) 456-3317, (818) 591-2809 or (805) 273-5611 for an immediate consultation on your Los Angeles County securities fraud case.
Photo Credit: Marco Verch, via Flickr.com