For Release: September 24, 2003
U.S. COMMODITY FUTURES TRADING COMMISSION CHARGES CHICAGO MAN WITH BILKING COMMODITY INVESTORS IN FRAUDULENT SCHEME
Cameron Ownbey Allegedly Misrepresented His Past Trading Success by Falsely Claiming Annual Returns of 250 to 350 Percent; Court Enters Consent Order of Preliminary Injunction Against Ownbey, Freezing His Assets
WASHINGTON D.C. – The U.S. Commodity Futures Trading Commission (CFTC) filed an enforcement action in the U.S. District Court for the Northern District of Illinois against Cameron Ownbey of Chicago, Illinois, doing business as Ultimus and First National Investments, alleging fraud in soliciting the sale of commodity trading services. (CFTC v. Cameron Ownbey d/b/a Ultimus and First National Investments, Civil Action No.03-C 6592).
The complaint, filed on September 17, 2003, alleges that, from at least January 2001 to the present, Ownbey solicited customers to purchase trading directions for $5,500, which paid for the service for one year. The complaint alleges that in his solicitations Ownbey made misrepresentations or misleading statements to clients and potential clients regarding profit potential and his own past trading success. According to the complaint, misrepresentations included claims such as, “Wow you would have made over one million dollars in the last five years,” and “year after year we have returns of 250 to 350 percent.” The complaint further alleges that at least 45 individuals purchased the trading directions, and 32 of them lost money.
In addition, the complaint alleges that Ownbey failed to disclose to clients and prospective clients that, in January 2003, a CFTC administrative law judge found in an Initial Decision that Ownbey committed fraud in connection with the promotion and sales of trading recommendations from a prior commodity trading advisor firm that he owned and operated.
United States District Judge John A. Nordberg entered a consent order of preliminary injunction against Ownbey on September 18, 2003, freezing Ownbey’s assets and prohibiting further violations of the commodity laws until a hearing can be held.
In its continuing litigation against the defendant, the CFTC is seeking to enjoin any further illegal activity, an accounting of losses, reimbursement of customers, repayment of ill-gotten gains, and a civil penalty.
The following CFTC Division of Enforcement staff members are responsible for this case: Susan Gradman, William Janulis, Louis Traeger, Frank Ferrara, Michael Tallarico, Scott Williamson, and Rosemary Hollinger.
CFTC Media Enforcement Contact:
Associate Director, CFTC Division of Enforcement