On Friday, Acting U.S. Attorney Gregory G. Brooker announced that federal charges had been filed against 30-year-old Jeremy Richard Lundin for operating a Ponzi scheme and stealing more than $1 million from individual investors. Lundin was charged via a criminal information and his initial appearance will happen at a later date.
According to the information, the defendant claimed he conducted “options trading” through his company, Big Island Capital, from December 2014 to May 2017. Lundin allegedly worked with a network of associates and friends to convince investors to invest with Big Island Capital. The investors were commonly promised exponential growth through options trading.
During the course of the alleged crime, Lundin managed to solicit more than $1 million from investors. However, it is alleged that he utilized for money for personal purposes, instead of options trading. Mainly, the defendant is accused of spending investors’ money to fund his and his wife’s lavish lifestyle.
To help facilitate the scheme, Lundin is accused of providing victims with written materials detailing his supposed investment strategy. Lundin claimed that Big Island Capital’s goal was to “generate profits with options trading”. While he was unable to “guarantee” an exact percent, he would “shoot for” returns between 40 and 80 percent.
Victims were also required to enter into a contract agreement with Lundin. That agreement claimed that the assets of Big Island’s account would be kept in a brokerage account for safekeeping. The defendant frequently told investors that the value of the account was several hundred thousand dollars. In materials sent to a new victim on November 24, 2015, Lundin claimed that the firm’s capital was $730,000.
In reality, Lundin did not open a brokerage account until December 21, 2015. Simultaneously, it is alleged that Lundin created phony account statements in an attempt to make his scheme appear legitimate. Victim investors were also provided with online access to fictitious quarterly statements. Victims were told to make checks payable to “Big Island Capital”. The money would be deposited into a bank account in the company’s name.
Between May of 2015 and May of 2017, at least $992,000 was deposited into the account. Around that same period, the defendant allegedly transferred $933,950 from the business account to his and his wife’s account. Then, Lundin and his wife used the money on personal expenses, including automobiles, a boat, jewelry, travel expenses, retail purchases, and $366,000 for credit card payments.
Jeremy Richard Lundin of Mound, Minnesota has been charged with one count of mail fraud and one count of money laundering. He is innocent until proven guilty in a court of law.