A former analyst for scandal-plagued hedge fund NIR Group has pleaded guilty to taking kickbacks and fraud, amidst an investigation of his former firm for some of the same crimes.
Daryl Dworkin admitted he lied to Roslyn, N.Y.-based NIR’s investors about the firm’s private investments in public equities funds. He also acknowledged accepting kickbacks from a pair of “corrupt” PIPE dealers. The identities of the co-conspirators were not disclosed.
Dworkin faces up to 30 years in prison on the securities fraud and conspiracy charges.
NIR is currently the subject of a federal fraud and kickbacks probe, although neither the firm nor founder Corey Ribotsky have been charged with any wrongdoing. NIR has also been sued twice in the past two years by investors who say the firm has been making up its returns, which have been positive in 114 of 117 months. Most recently, an investor angered by NIR’s refusal to fill his redemption request accused Ribotsky of providing investors “with valuations of the fund’s securities which are wholly fanciful.” The earlier lawsuit, which was settled earlier this year, alleged that NIR’s returns make “no sense.”
NIR denies any wrongdoing, and jumped on the note that Dworkin “took steps to conceal the kickbacks from NIR’s senior management.”