The Securities and Alternate Fee in the present day charged William Ok. Ichioka, of New York, New York, with fraudulently elevating $25 million from particular person traders primarily in California and Oregon by making false claims about his investing success and promising massive anticipated returns however as an alternative utilizing investor funds for playing and to counterpoint himself. Ichioka has agreed to resolve the fees towards him.
In line with the SEC’s grievance, filed in the US District Courtroom for the Northern District of California, from not less than June 2019 to October 2021, Ichioka solicited investments for his unregistered funding fund, Ichioka Ventures, by claiming he was an completed investor, promising outsized returns, and guaranteeing traders’ principal. In actuality although, because the grievance alleges, Ichioka was unable to pay traders the promised returns and used cash from new traders to repay different traders. Additionally, as alleged within the grievance, Ichioka falsified a financial institution assertion and different paperwork to create an look of success. Lastly, based on the grievance, Ichioka additionally misappropriated hundreds of thousands of traders’ funds for private use, comparable to on luxurious watches, automobiles, playing, and a penthouse residence.
“As we allege in our grievance, Ichioka lured traders by falsely stating that he was a self-made multimillionaire investor in a position to generate important funding returns, however the actual story was that Ichioka stole investor funds to counterpoint himself,” mentioned Monique C. Winkler, Director of the SEC’s San Francisco Regional Workplace. “This case highlights the SEC’s dedication to holding unhealthy actors accountable and defending the integrity of our markets.”
The SEC’s grievance costs Ichioka with violating the antifraud provisions of the federal securities legal guidelines. Ichioka has agreed to the entry of a partial closing judgment, topic to courtroom approval, imposing requested everlasting and conduct-based injunctions in addition to an officer and director bar, and reserving problems with disgorgement, prejudgment curiosity, and a civil penalty for additional dedication by the courtroom.
In parallel actions, the U.S. Legal professional’s Workplace for the Northern District of California (USAO) and Commodity Futures Buying and selling Fee (CFTC) in the present day additionally introduced costs towards Ichioka.
The SEC’s investigation was carried out by Erin E. Wilk of the Enforcement Division’s Crypto Property and Cyber Unit and supervised by Jason H. Lee and Ms. Winkler of the San Francisco Regional Workplace. The SEC’s litigation will probably be led by Ms. Wilk and John Han. The SEC appreciates the help of the USAO, CFTC, the Federal Bureau of Investigation, and the Inner Income Service – Prison Investigation.