Woodbridge Group & Robert Shapiro — Alleged Ponzi Scheme

SEC Sues Woodbridge Group, Robert Shapiro for Allegedly Operating $1.2 Billion Ponzi Scheme which Purportedly Targeted Main Street Investors

The U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission recently announced charges and an asset freeze against Woodbridge Group and Robert Shapiro who allegedly operated a $1.2 billion Ponzi scheme that purportedly bilked thousands of retail investors, according to an SEC Complaint currently under review by attorneys Jason Kane and James Booker.

Peiffer Wolf Carr & Kane securities practice lawyers are investigating Woodbridge Group’s alleged Ponzi scheme. They represent investors with millions of dollars of claims, have been assisting them in the Woodbridge bankruptcy proceedings, and are evaluating a number of recovery options on their behalf.

Investors who believe they may have lost money in activity related to Robert Shapiro and Woodbridge Group’s alleged Ponzi scheme are encouraged to contact attorneys Jason Kane or James Booker with any useful information or for a free, no obligation discussion about their options.

Robert Shapiro and the Woodbridge Group of Companies LLC, a group of unregistered investment companies headquartered in Boca Raton, Florida, allegedly ran a Ponzi scheme which purportedly defrauded more than 8,400 investors in unregistered Woodbridge funds, according to the aforementioned SEC Complaint.

The SEC further alleges that Woodbridge’s business model was constructed on lies, and also allegedly targeted senior citizens, according to Stephanie Avian, Co-Director of the SEC’s Enforcement Division.

Another member of the top brass as the SEC, Steven Peikin, Co-Director of the SEC’s Enforcement Division, also made the following statement which suggests that Woodbridge was allegedly a Ponzi scheme:

“The only way Woodbridge was able to pay investors their dividends and interest payments was through the constant infusion of new investor money.”

What is more, the SEC Complaint further alleges that Shapiro allegedly implemented an intricate system of layered companies to purportedly hide his ownership interest in the alleged third-party borrowers.

What is more, Woodbridge allegedly made advertisements of its main business as issuing loans to supposed third-party commercial property owners which paid out Woodbridge 11-15% annual interest for “hard money,” short-term financing, the SEC Complaint notes.

The SEC further alleges that Woodbridge and Shapiro purportedly worked to avoid investors trying to cash out at the finality of their terms and were happy to make announcements in marketing materials such as the following:

“Clients keep coming back to [Woodbridge] because time and experience have proven results.  Over 90% national renewal rate!”

Shapiro and Woodbridge Allegedly Used Investors’ Money to Make Payments to Other Investors, and Dished out Payments of $64.5 million in Commissions to Sales Agents who Allegedly Advertised the Investments as “Low Risk” and “Conservative”

Shapiro and Woodbridge allegedly used investors’ money to make payments to other investors, and allegedly made payments of $64.5 million in commissions to sales agents who allegedly made advertisements that the investments were “low risk” and “conservative”, according to the aforementioned Complaint under review by Alan Rosa and James Booker.

Shapiro, who hails from Sherman Oaks, California, allegedly diverted up to $21 million for his own purported personal use and benefit, including charter planes, country club fees, and luxury vehicles and jewelry, the SEC reports.

What is more, the purported Woodbridge Ponzi scheme allegedly collapsed in familiar Ponzi fashion in early December as Woodbridge allegedly stopped paying investors and filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection, the SEC Complaint notes.

Furthermore, the Honorable Judge Marcia G. Cooke has complied with the SEC and purportedly granted the SEC’s request for a temporary asset freeze against Shapiro and a group of his unregistered investment companies, and has allegedly ordered them to provide an accounting of all money received from investors, the SEC Complaint states.

Finally, the SEC is purportedly seeking a return of allegedly ill-gotten gains with interest and financial penalties, and a court hearing has been scheduled for Dec. 29, 2017 on the SEC’s request to continue the asset freeze, the SEC Complaint reports.

Securities Lawyers Investigating

The Peiffer Wolf Carr & Kane securities lawyers often represent investors who lose money as a result of investment-related fraud or misconduct and are currently investigating Robert Shapiro and Woodbridge Group’s alleged Ponzi scheme. They take most cases of this type on a contingency fee basis and advance the case costs, and only get paid for their fees and costs out of money they recover for their clients.

The Peiffer Wolf Carr & Kane securities lawyers represent investors with millions of dollars of claims, have been assisting them in the Woodbridge bankruptcy proceedings, and are evaluating a number of recovery options on their behalf. Investors who believe they lost money as a result of Robert Shapiro and Woodbridge Group’s alleged Ponzi scheme may contact the securities lawyers at Peiffer Wolf Carr & Kane, Jason Kane or James Booker, for a free no-obligation evaluation of their recovery options, at (585) 310-5140 or via e-mail at arosca@prwlegal.com or jbooker@prwlegal.com.

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In our legal system, every person is innocent until and unless found guilty by a court of law or a tribunal. Whenever we reference “allegations” or charges that are “alleged,” such allegations or charges have not been proven, and are merely accusations, not findings of fault, as of the date of the blog. We do not have, nor do we undertake, a duty to continue to monitor or follow cases about which we report, and/or to publish subsequent blogs regarding various developments that may occur in such cases. Readers are encouraged to conduct their own research regarding any such cases and any developments that may or may not have occurred in such cases.