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SEC Busts Alleged $40M Ponzi Scam

BOISE (CN) - Daren L. Palmer took more than $40 million from investors in a "classic Ponzi scheme" he ran under the name of Trigon Group, the SEC claims in Federal Court. He promised 20% annual returns and took most of the money from his friends and neighbors in Idaho Falls, the agency says.

The CFTC also sued Palmer and Trigon, claiming Trigon paid himself as much as $35,000 a month.

"Palmer also used investor funds for personal purposes including making payments on credit cards, a partially completed $12 million mansion in Idaho Falls, purchasing snow mobiles and paying himself a 'salary,'" according to the SEC complaint.

"Palmer failed to disclose that he paid himself a huge salary or used investor funds for personal purposes.

"Palmer did not reveal to investors that he paid their quarterly returns with funds from new investors.

"Palmer told investors he was licensed to sell securities.

"Palmer has never held any securities licenses."

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