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Monday, July 15, 2024 | Back issues
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Feds Say Felon Came up|With New Tricks

(CN) - The Commodity Futures Trading Commission claims a recidivist felon defrauded "students" and others of $800,000, in futures trading scams.

The CFTC sued Alexander Giap, of Annandale, Va., and his Falls Church-based business, iTrade, in Alexandria, Va. Federal Court.

The CFTC says neither Giap nor iTRADE has registered with it.

"Giap is a convicted felon," the complaint states. "In 1995 he pled guilty to bid rigging, wire fraud and bank fraud for his involvement in three separate criminal schemes that involvedthe buying, selling and loan refinancing of residential real estate in northern Virginia".

In his new schemes, the CFTC says, Giap used iTRADE as a "school" to conduct his commodity-trading adviser (CTA) business and solicit investments in it.

In his other new scheme, Giap acted as an unregistered CTA but did not incorporate iTRADE into his operations, the CFTC says.

In both schemes he defrauded clients through material omissions, according to the complaint.

The CFTC says he ran the first scam January 2009 through at least September 2009, and took $104,000 from 13 "students" to participate in iTRADE.

But the CFTC says Giap failed to disclose:

that he had a history of substantial losses in trading futures;

that he was a convicted felon and owed restitution for his criminal conviction;

that he was subject to IRS liens for delinquent taxes;

and that he was required to register as a CTA but was unregistered.

The CFTC also says that Giap fraudulently indicated that his "students'" money was not at risk because he provided a "money back guarantee."

In the second scheme, which he ran from October 2009 through October 2011, Giap defrauded investors of more than $700,000, the CFCT says. It claims he again acted as an unregistered CTA and advised at least four people about futures trading, directly through managed accounts in exchange for pay.

The CFTC seeks restitution, disgorgement and fines and wants Giap ordered not to do it again.

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