August 30, 2012
Washington, DC – The U.S. Commodity Futures Trading Commission (CFTC) today announced the filing of a complaint in the U.S. District Court for the Northern District of California, charging defendant Jeffrey Gustaveson of Carlsbad, Calif., with fraud, misappropriation, and issuing false statements in an approximate $2.5 million commodity pool scheme.
According to the CFTC complaint, filed on August 29, 2012, from at least January 2010 through approximately July 2010, Gustaveson accepted at least $2,495,000 million from at least four individuals to invest in a commodity futures pool. However, rather than trade pool participants’ funds as promised, Gustaveson allegedly only used approximately $400,000 of the funds to trade commodity futures, which resulted in a net loss. Gustaveson kept the remaining funds in a checking account from which he used at least $400,000 of pool funds to pay his personal expenses, including hotels, restaurants, and online gambling, according to the complaint.
Furthermore, to conceal his fraud, Gustaveson allegedly distributed false trading account statements to pool participants that misrepresented the value of the pool, reported false profits, and failed to disclose Gustaveson’s misappropriation of pool participants’ funds. When his fraud was exposed, Gustaveson allegedly repaid a portion of pool participants’ funds, but, despite repeated requests to do so, Gustaveson allegedly has not returned $415,000 of pool participants’ money. According to the CFTC complaint, Gustaveson admitted in a California state court proceeding that he had misappropriated investor money and falsified financial statements in connection with the acts described in the CFTC complaint.
In its continuing litigation, the CFTC seeks restitution to defrauded customers, a return of ill-gotten gains, civil monetary penalties, trading and registration bans, and permanent injunctions against further violations of federal commodities laws, as charged.
CFTC Division of Enforcement staff members responsible for this case are Lindsey Evans, Mary Beth Spear, Diane Romaniuk, Ava M. Gould, Scott R. Williamson, Rosemary Hollinger, and Richard B. Wagner.
Last Updated: August 30, 2012