SEC: California Scammer Traded On Agency’s Name To Sanitize $60 Million Fraud And Ponzi Caper; John A. Geringer And GLR Capital Management Charged With Fraud Amid Allegations ‘Fund’ Claimed Handsome Return Before It Even Existed
A California investment adviser presiding for years over a $60 million fraud duped investors by making Ponzi payments and used the names of the Securities and Exchange Commission and the National Association of Securities Dealers to sanitize his scheme, the SEC charged.
Named defendants in a fraud case filed in the Northern District of California were John A. Geringer, 47, of Scotts Valley, and his Scotts Valley-based companies: GLR Capital Management LLC; GLR Advisors LLC; and Geringer, Luck & Rode LLC. GLR Growth Fund L.P. of Scotts Valley was named a relief defendant amid allegations it received ill-gotten gains.
The SEC said Geringer touted imaginary annual trading profits of between 17 and 25 percent to lure investors into his scam, describing the investigation as one that exposed internal inconsistencies. Fraud schemes are known for such inconsistencies.
“Although the fund was started in 2003, marketing materials claimed 25 percent returns in 2001 and 2002 — before the fund even existed,” the SEC charged. “The marketing materials also falsely indicated a nearly 24 percent return in 2008 from investing mainly in publicly-traded securities, options, and commodities, while the S&P 500 Index lost 38.5 percent.”
And Geringer “further lied” to investors when the claimed his venture was “MEMBER NASD SEC APPROVED,” the agency said.
“The SEC does not ‘approve’ funds or investments in funds, nor was the fund (or any related entity) a member of the NASD (now called the Financial Industry Regulatory Authority — FINRA),” the SEC said.
Geringer raised more than $60 million since 2005, mostly from investors in the Santa Cruz area, the SEC said.
“To mask his fraud, Geringer paid millions of dollars in ‘returns’ to investors largely by using money received from newer investors,” the SEC said. “He also sent investors periodic account statements showing fictitious growth in their investments.”