Petters Fundraiser Pleads Not Guilty

May 4 2011 | 11:42am ET

Frank Vennes, the former Thomas Petters fundraiser indicted alongside two hedge fund managers last month, has pleaded not guilty to charges he lied to investors about Petters' Ponzi scheme.

Vennes entered his plea today in St. Paul, Minn. His co-defendants, Palm Beach Capital Management's David Harrold and Bruce Prevost, pleaded guilty last month, just a day after the trio were indicted.

According to prosecutors, Vennes, who was released on $100,000 bail, raised about $1 billion from Palm Beach. Investors in the hedge fund were saddled with losses of as much as $100 million.

Vennes is set to be back in court on May 31.

Petters himself was convicted last year and sentenced to 50 years in prison for running the $3.65 billion scam.

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