SEC Charges Miami-Based Adviser with Hiding Trading Losses and Diverting Client Funds
The Securities and Exchange Commission recently charged a Miami-based investment adviser for defrauding his clients by concealing trading losses and diverting investor funds for personal use.
The SEC alleges that Anand Sekaran and his firm Wasson Capital Advisors Ltd. fabricated documents showing illusory profits after his trading strategy became unprofitable in 2008 and produced substantial losses for clients. Sekaran also misused client funds to pay various personal and business expenses, and he collected fees in excess of what he was due under the arrangements he had with clients.
Sekaran and Wasson agreed to resolve the SEC’s charges as well as a parallel criminal action announced today by the U.S. Attorney’s Office for the Southern District of New York.
According to the SEC’s complaint filed in U.S. District Court for the Southern District of New York, Sekaran provided investors with a spreadsheet inaccurately showing that Wasson was profitable. He inflated account balances on some clients’ account statements, using the letterhead of a defunct British Virgin Islands trust company for one client and the letterhead of a New Zealand firm for another client. He misappropriated investor money for personal mortgage and maintenance payments, restaurant and travel expenses, entertainment and event tickets, employee salaries and health insurance, and rent and office expenses.
In settling the SEC’s charges, Sekaran and Wasson consented to a final judgment imposing permanent injunctions from future violations of the anti-fraud provisions of the federal securities laws. Sekaran separately consented to an SEC order barring him from the securities industry and penny stock industry. Sekaran is required to pay $2.3 million to satisfy restitution and forfeiture orders in the criminal matter.
With extensive courtroom, arbitration and mediation experience and an in-depth understanding of securities law, our firm provides all of our clients with the personal service they deserve. Handling cases worth $25,000 or more, we represent clients throughout Florida and across the United States, as well as for foreign individuals that invested in U.S. banks or brokerage firms. Contact us to arrange your free initial consultation.
At the Fort Lauderdale Law Office of Russell L. Forkey, we represent clients throughout South and Central Florida, including Fort Lauderdale, West Palm Beach, Boca Raton, Sunrise, Plantation, Coral Springs, Deerfield Beach, Pompano Beach, Delray, Boynton Beach, Hollywood, Lake Worth, Royal Palm Beach, Manalapan, Jupiter, Gulf Stream, Wellington, Fort Pierce, Stuart, Palm City, Jupiter, Miami, Orlando, Maitland, Winter Park, Altamonte Springs, Lake Mary, Heathrow, Melbourne, Palm Bay, Cocoa Beach, Vero Beach, Daytona Beach, Deland, New Smyrna Beach, Ormand Beach, Broward County, Palm Beach County, Dade County, Orange County, Seminole County, Martin County, Brevard County, Indian River County, Volusia County and Monroe County, Florida. The law office of Russell L. Forkey also represents South American, Canadian and other foreign residents that do business with U.S. financial institutions, investment advisors, brokerage and precious metal firms.