The penny-stock brokerage firm Blinder, Robinson & Co. and a Salt Lake City man have been implicated in an alleged stock fraud and international money-laundering scheme, according to court documents released last week.
The operation allegedly poured thousands of dollars into penny stocks without reporting the source of the money to federal authorities as required by law, Internal Revenue Service agents in Las Vegas, Nev., have testified.The funds were funneled through phony investors and shell companies with no assets to inside investors of penny-stock firms, according to allegations in the documents.
The operation reached across the United States to Switzerland and other European countries, according to a court affidavit submitted by IRS agent Bob Salisbury.
According to the court documents, the main targets of the IRS and Securities and Exchange Commission investigation are Michael D. Wright of Salt Lake City and Arnold Kimmes of Palm Springs, Calif.
Beginning in 1985, the two formed "shell companies," with no known assets, and sold the stock to "straw parties" - people who allowed Wright and Kimmes to use their names in transactions although they had no control over the stock, the documents alleged. The proceeds from the sales were shipped to Switzerland and other European countries.
The affidavit states that Meyer Blinder, who founded Blinder, Robinson, and his brother, Morris, are under investigation for aiding and abetting securities fraud.