Friday, 27 March 2015
Last updated 3 hours ago
Dec 16 2011 | 4:06am ET
His first hedge fund venture ended in bankruptcy. His second has ended with a guilty plea.
Ward Onsa yesterday admitted to running a Ponzi scheme at his New Century Hedge Fund Partners. According to prosecutors, Onsa raised more than $5 million for the vehicle, mostly from investors’ individual retirement accounts.
Onsa’s investing premise was that the Dow Jones Industrial Average would never exceed 10,748.But it did, breaking the barrier in 2006 and remaining above it for all of 2007 and most of 2008, causing huge losses. So Onsa took some $2.6 million raised from newer investors and loaned it or “returned” it to earlier investors. He also provided falsified statements and siphoned off money for himself, in part via his already defunct firm, Ward Onsa & Co., which collapsed in 2005.
Onsa faces up to 20 years in prison.
“The defendant continued to solicit investors by showing fictitious gains, both while the fund was losing money and after he had ceased to invest at all,” Janice Fedarcyk, the Federal Bureau of Investigation agent in charge of the probe, said.
“Through a web of lies and deceit, the defendant targeted those funds to line his own pockets and prop up his failed investments,” Loretta Lynch, the U.S. attorney in Brooklyn, said. “The defendant’s criminal decision to tap investors’ IRA accounts as part of his Ponzi scheme reaffirms this office’s resolve to vigorously investigate and prosecute fraud in the securities and commodities markets.”
Mar 9 2015 | 6:35am ET
As more investors look to diversify, many are beginning to use retirement funds to invest in alternative assets such as private equity and real estate. Kelly Rodriques, CEO & President of PENSCO Trust Company, explains how companies can connect with those looking to use their retirement accounts in a different way. Read more…
Mar 20 2015 | 12:45pm ET
StreetWise Partners, a non-profit organization that works with low-income individuals to help them overcome employment barriers, raised over $275,000 at the 2015 Raising the Ante Charity Poker Tournament and Casino Event last Wednesday evening at Capitale. Here are some photos from the event. Read more…