The Securities and Exchange Commission has charged two men involved in the biggest influx of funds into one of the largest-ever Ponzi schemes in South Florida.
Business partners George Levin and Frank Preve allegedly raised around $157 million from 173 investors linked to a $1.2 billion financial fraud scheme collapsing in 2009.
Linked to the case, former Florida attorney Scott Rothstein is serving a 50-year prison sentence for selling fake legal settlements covering non-existent plaintiffs and defendants. “Rothstein simply used the funds in classic Ponzi scheme fashion to make payments due other investors and support his lavish lifestyle,” the regulator said.
According to the SEC, Levin and Preve used investor funds to buy settlements from Rothstein through his well-known law firm.
"Levin and Preve fueled Rothstein's Ponzi scheme with the false sense of security they gave investors," said Eric Bustillo, director of the SEC's Miami regional office. "They promised to safeguard investors' assets, but gave Rothstein money with nothing to show for it."