Hedge Fund Fraudsters Vilar, Tanaka Sent To Prison

Feb 12 2010 | 5:34am ET

A pair of convicted hedge fund fraudsters has been sentenced to prison for a scam that allegedly cost investors $40 million.

Alberto Vilar was sentenced to nine years in prison, and Gary Tanaka five years. The two were convicted last year of defrauding investors in their technology hedge fund shop, Amerindo Investment Advisors.

Vilar, who had faced up to 22 years in prison, was also ordered to pay a $25,000 fine and $21.9 million in restitution. He was sentenced to three years probation after the end of his prison term.

According to the Securities and Exchange Commission, Vilar and Tanaka defrauded numerous investors in two Panamanian hedge funds, Amerindo Techology Growth Fund and ATGF II. They were also accused of misappropriating funds from the Amerindo Venture Fund.

But Vilar denied doing much wrong.

“I deeply regret any inconvenience that our 14,000 clients might have suffered,” he told the court. “Fortunately there were only five victims. I’m 95% confident that they will be paid.”

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