NEWARK, NJ – A California man pleaded guilty Wednesday to carrying out a $ 50 million fraud scheme using bogus websites that advertised high returns on certificates of deposit.
Allen Giltman, 56, pleaded guilty by videoconference to wire fraud conspiracy and securities conspiracy. His sentencing is scheduled for May 10.
The multi-state scheme was prosecuted by the New Jersey US attorney’s office because some of the more than 70 victims are from the state.
Nina Marino, a Los Angeles-based lawyer representing Giltman, declined to comment.
Investigators say that over an eight-year period, Giltman, of Irvine, Calif., And others used bogus websites offering high returns on certificates of deposit to lure investors. Some of the websites were created to look like legitimate financial institutions.
To hide their involvement, the co-conspirators bought the website’s domains with prepaid gift cards and used virtual private networks, or VPNs, to disguise their digital footprint, prosecutors said. Investigators have identified at least 150 of the websites and more than 70 victims in New Jersey and elsewhere.
The money transferred by the victims was channeled to accounts in Russia, the Republic of Georgia, Turkey and Hong Kong and was not used to purchase the CDs.
Giltman was ordered to confiscate around $ 100,000 as well as a few dozen jewelry and several luxury watches, according to court documents. He also faces a civil complaint filed by the United States Securities and Exchange Commission.