Grifphon Hedge Fund Manager Pleads Guilty In Ponzi Case

Apr 17 2013 | 12:45pm ET

An Oregon hedge fund manager pleaded guilty yesterday to running a Ponzi scheme, capping a three-year-long probe.

Yusaf Jawed will be sentenced to six-and-a-half years in prison as part of a plea deal on the 17 counts of mail and wire fraud. He's also been ordered to forfeit $6.4 million, although a lawyer for the victims told The Oregonian last week, "No one expects the $6.4 million will ever be paid by him.

According to prosecutors, Jawed ran a Ponzi scheme at his Grifphon Asset Management for a decade. The Securities and Exchange Commission, which in September sued Jawed and his former business partners, alleges that the former defrauded more than 100 investors of $37 million, making both Ponzi-type payments to earlier investors and using investor money to pay personal expenses.

"At least as far back as 2008, the money was not invested at all and returns were not being realized," Assistant U.S. Attorney Allan Garten said at the plea hearing, in Portland, Ore., federal court.

In December, three Grifphon salesmen settled the SEC's charges against them.

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