Keith F. Simmons and Deanna Salazar have been charged with an additional
$76 million dollars in civil monetary penalties for their engagement in
defrauding investors in a foreign exchange market Ponzi scheme. The two
defrauders are currently serving their prison sentence.
As Meyer Wilson reported in 2011, The U.S. Commodity Futures Trading Commission
(CFTC) brought charges of securities fraud, wired fraud, and money laundering
against Mr. Simmons and Ms. Salazar. Mr. Salazar’s company Black
Diamond Capital Solutions, LLC and Ms. Salazar’s companies Life
Plus Group, LLC and Black Diamond Holdings, LLC. were also implicated
as a vessel for the scheme.
Along with Mr. Simmons and Ms. Salazar, Brian Coats from Genesis Wealth
Management, LLC and Jonathon Davey from Divine Circulation Services, LLC,
Divine Stewardship, LLC, Safe Harbor Ventures, Inc., Safe Harbor Wealth
Investments, Inc., and Safe Harbor Wealth, Inc., were also convicted in
aiding with the Ponzi scheme. While Mr. Simmons and Ms. Salazar were charged
with a prison sentence and monetary penalties in 2012, the litigation
over Mr. Coats and Mr. Davey is still going on.
According to the Order, Mr. Simmons and Ms. Salazar, with the help of Mr.
Coats and Mr. Davey, defrauded at least 240 investors for $35 million
dollars. Clients believed their money was being invested in the foreign
currency market, however, that allegedly was not the case. According to
the CFTC, Mr. Simmons and Ms. Salazar used the money to pay previous customers
and fund their own extravagant lifestyle.
U.S. District Judge Robert J. Conrad, along with fining Mr. Simmons and
Ms. Salazar the monetary penalties, has also implemented a permanent ban
to keep the two individuals from participating in trading and registration
and to keep them from further violating anti-fraud laws.