Securities regulators in Massachusetts and Alabama issued cease-and-desist orders Wednesday against Premiere Asset Management, Inc. of Talladega, Alabama, and its principals for orchestrating a Ponzi scheme through an ad on Craigslist.
Secretary of the Commonwealth William Galvin of Massachusetts charged Premiere Asset Management — which was not registered as a broker-dealer or investment advisor–and its principals with fraud in offering unregistered securities in what an administrative complaint describes as a Ponzi scheme.
The Massachusetts Securities Division issued a temporary cease-and-desist order against the respondents, while the Alabama Securities Commission is also seeking a cease-and-desist order against Premiere and its principals.
The Massachusetts case involves a retired school teacher in the state who sent Premiere money last year after responding to an advertisement on Craigslist that promised a 100% return in as little as 48 hours. A spokesperson in Galvin’s office said that the school teacher invested nearly $200,000.
The spokesperson in Galvin’s office said there are “other victims” in Alabama, and that more ”could emerge.”
“An unregistered solicitor assured the investor his account was 100% secure ‘with the most reputable bank in NY, bank of Melon (sic),’” the Massachusetts complaint states.