SEC accuses father, son of Ponzi-style scheme
Aug. 20, 2018
CHICAGO (AP) — The Securities and Exchange Commission in Chicago accuses a father and son of a Ponzi-style scheme that raised at least $135 million since 2010 from over 900 investors nationwide.
A Monday SEC statement says Jerome H. Cohen and his son, Shaun D. Cohen, dangled the prospect of double-digit returns, falsely assuring investors the investments were secured by income-generating, South Side Chicago properties.
The civil complaint alleges they pocketed up to 30 percent of the investments and began paying older investors with new investors' money as their businesses faltered.
The father is from Florida, the son from New York. Their firms, Equitybuild and Equitybuild Finance, are also defendants. Messages seeking comment weren't returned.
The SEC wants the ill-gotten gains returned. A judge Friday ordered the Cohens to stop soliciting new investments.