Finding that Southern California investment adviser Craig Arsenault defrauded customers while associated with Atlas Capital Management, SEC staff barred Arsenault, writing that Arsenault committed his alleged fraud through ACT Global Investments, a business activity that Arsenault previously claimed on his CRD report was "not investment-related."
The SEC published Order 3-19105 barring Arsenault (CRD #2805664) from the industry after the Commission filed a complaint alleging Arsenault defrauded clients over their combined $5.7 million investment in ACT Global. A judgment from the US District Court for the Central District of California (greater Los Angeles area) additionally enjoined Arsenault from committing further fraud, and from making untrue statements of material facts. The court initially froze Arsenault's assets in December 2018, including ACT Global Investment bank accounts and the JP Morgan Chase account belonging to its subsidiary/affiliate, AJF Development Group, LLC of Laguna Niguel.
Whereas Arsenault purportedly solicited his investments by telling his clients that their funds would be used for secured loans to doctors and medical personnel, the SEC's report states that Arsenault instead used client funds to make unsecured loans to non-medical clients, namely a used car dealership and a mobile-home real estate venture.
Even worse, the SEC alleged that after the used auto dealership stopped making payments on the loans, ACT opted to forgive the debt in exchange for ownership interests in undeveloped land in Oceanside, California, which was placed, jointly, into the name of ACT Global Investments/AJF Development Group.
Furthermore, Arsenault allegedly provided clients with deceptive account statements that falsely indicated their investments were generating income when they were not. For instance, ACT allegedly reported $82,000 of interest income in 2014 all while actually bringing in no interest income whatsoever, inflated figures which purportedly persisted through 2018.
Finally, the SEC charged Arsenault with misappropriating and misusing over $1 million of client funds invested in ACT Global.
If you have invested with Atlas Capital Management or ACT Global Investments adviser Craig Arsenault of Laguna Niguel or with any broker or registered representative who solicited investments for a purpose that was misrepresented to you—such as for a secured loan that turned out to be a riskier unsecured loan to an entirely different client—or who otherwise misappropriated, converted, or misused your money, thus proving harmful to your investments or interests, please call the experienced arbitration attorneys at The Law Offices of Jonathan W. Evans & Associates at (800) 699-1881 for an investigation and consultation.