Texas Securities Board Stops Another Online Impersonation Scam

Sep 16

Securities Commissioner Travis J. Iles entered an emergency cease and desist order to stop Riek Capital from illegally promoting fraudulent investments in trading programs.  The order also accuses the company of engaging in an impersonation scheme – alleging Riek Capital is misappropriating the identity of a registered person and using his credentials to falsely claim legitimacy. 
According to the order, Riek Capital – a business purportedly operating from Manchester in the United Kingdom – published an advertisement in Dealstream.  Dealstream is an online marketplace with more than 100,000 members from 100 countries - including members from Texas.  Riek Capital allegedly used the advertisement and the forum to promote lucrative investments in trading programs tied to binary options, forex and cryptocurrencies. 
Riek Capital has been touting generous returns associated with its trading programs.  For example, Riek Capital allegedly claims a principal investment of $21,000 in its Gold Plan purportedly pays as much as 6% per week and a principal investment of $100,000 in the same program purportedly pays as much as 0.93% per day.  According to the order, Riek Capital claims the returns are guaranteed regardless of the actual profitability of the underlying trading activities.
Riek Capital is not registered to sell securities with Texas.  However, according to the order, the business is misappropriating the identity of a person registered with FINRA and another state securities regulator.  It is accused of falsely claiming the registrant is a principal of Riek Capital – a means of falsely adding legitimacy to its operations.
“Scammers are continuing to impersonate registered parties,” said TSSB Enforcement Director Joe Rotunda.  “Investors must remain vigilant and conduct thorough due diligence to ensure they know whom they’re really dealing with.”  He also noted the TSSB recently issued guidance that warned about the uptick in impersonation scams.
The order also named Joshua Oj Robertson, Nicolai A. Andresen, Robert Costomoris, Katherine C.B. Cullum, Steve Welch, Jeffery T. Winter, Marcos D. Leon, John M. Willock and Gareth M. Cope.  According to the order, the parties are not registered to sell securities in Texas and Riek Capital’s securities are not registered or permitted for sale in Texas.
Contact: TSSB Enforcement Director Joe Rotunda at jrotunda@ssb.texas.gov or 512-305-8392 for additional information.