Liquid Capital Management Founder Charged With Ponzi Scheme

Feb 16 2011 | 3:53am ET

Prominent hedge fund manager and former CNBC analyst Brian Kim has been charged with ripping investors off to the tune of $4 million.

The charges against Kim, who is a fugitive, were announced yesterday by Manhattan District Attorney Cyrus Vance. According to Vance, the Liquid Capital Management founder promised investors that he would put their money in “safe, stable and consistently profitable securities” but instead lost millions on futures contracts—and stole some of the rest.

Kim was also sued the Commodity Futures Trading Commission, which said he fraudulently raised at least $2.1 million, using some of the money to pay for such mundane things as groceries and his car loan, as well as on vacations and posh duds.

According to the CFTC, Kim invested only $668,000 of the millions he raised between January and October of last year. The rest, he spent on himself and on Ponzi scheme payments to other investors.

Kim failed to appear at his trial on separate grand larceny and forgery charges last month, stemming from his alleged theft of more than $435,000 from his New York condominium homeowners association. He faces up to 25 years in prison on the new charges.

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