Thursday, 21 August 2014
Last updated 24 min ago
Jul 23 2009 | 2:26am ET
The Illinois hedge fund manager charged with fraud in connection with the Thomas Petters Ponzi scheme scandal won’t be freed on bail, after all.
A federal judge has decided that Gregory Bell is a flight risk and ordered him jailed until his trial on charges that he helped Petters cover up his alleged $3 billion scam with a series of fraudulent transactions. Prosecutors argued that a $15 million offshore trust in Switzerland gives Bell, a Russian native, the means to flee.
“The preponderance of evidence shows that Mr. Bell is a flight risk,” assistant U.S. Attorney Timothy Rank told U.S. District Judge Michael Davis in Minneapolis, Minn. “What really matters is that the money is there and that Mr. Bell, in a knowing, calculated way, decided to put himself in the situation.”
Bell’s attorney countered that his client doesn’t even have a passport, but to no avail.
Last week, a magistrate judge granted Bell $1.5 million bail with home monitoring, but prosecutors appealed the decision.
According to the Securities and Exchange Commission, Bell’s Lancelot Investment Management steered more than $2 billion—nearly all of the money it raised—to Petters, earning millions of dollars in “fraudulent fees.” The complaint charges Lancelot and Bell with wrongfully withdrawing more than $40 million from the five Lancelot funds—which have since filed for bankruptcy—in purported fees in the months before Petters’ alleged scam was exposed.
Aug 4 2014 | 7:42am ET
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The July/August 2014 issue is our largest in years—filled with the best trading strategies and stories from 43 years of being the primary publication for commodity, stock, options and forex traders.
The Alpha Pages Editor's Note