Former Millennium Capital Exchange CEO Pleads Guilty for Role in Ponzi Scheme
The former CEO of Millennium Capital Exchange has pleaded guilty to running a foreign exchange market Ponzi scheme. Federal prosecutors say that Maxwell incorporated and owned Millennium, an investment firm that claimed to deal in the forex/foreign exchange market.
According to court documents, from 2008 to January 2012, Maxwell allegedly lured individuals throughout the United States to invest in forex trading, promising high fixed rates of return. The indictment accused Maxwell of making multiple false statements in order to secure these investments, including:
- Claiming that he was an experienced and successful forex trader
- Promising returns from 48% to 72% annually
- Stating that his trading strategies would produce large gains and keep losses to a minimum
- Claiming he had backup money that could cover the cost of any losses investors sustained
According to the U.S. Attorney’s Office for the Northern District of Georgia, exactly the opposite was true. They claimed that Maxwell was actually very inexperienced in forex trading, lost most of the money he had invested in forex markets, and did not have any money with which to pay back investors.
Prosecutors say that Maxwell led investors to believe that their money would be handled through accounts in Switzerland. Instead, Maxwell allegedly diverted about half of his customers’ money for his own personal use as well as to pay back earlier investors.
Maxwell was indicted in March of this year and pleaded guilty this week. His sentencing is scheduled for September 2, 2015.