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Utah man charged with running $100M Ponzi scheme

Published: Monday, June 25 2012 3:24 p.m. MDT

The Security and Exchange Commission has charged a Utah man and his company with allegedly cheating investors out of $100 million nationwide through a real estate-based Ponzi scheme.

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Also check out: Financial Fraud cases in Utah

WEST JORDAN – The U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission has charged a Utah man and his company with allegedly cheating investors out of $100 million nationwide through a real estate-based Ponzi scheme.

The SEC placed a temporary restraining order and asset freeze on Wayne L. Palmer and his West Jordan-based firm National Note of Utah, LC after receiving complaints from investors.

Palmer promised more than 600 investors a 12 percent annual return by using their money to purchase mortgage notes and real estate assets, or to make real estate loans.

“Palmer promised double-digit returns at his real estate seminars, where investors learned the hard way about his lies and deceit,” Kenneth Israel, director of the SEC’s Salt Lake City Regional Office, said in a statement.

Despite Palmer’s promises, National Note fit the bill of a Ponzi scheme by using money it took in to pay earlier investors, according to a statement from the SEC. Palmer also told investors that money would come, even though National Note was delinquent in paying existing investors.

Palmer is being charged with violating the anti-fraud and securities registration provisions of U.S. securities laws, as well as operating as an unregistered broker-dealer.

EMAIL: jferguson@desnews.com

TWITTER: @joeyferguson

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