The owner of a Richmond-area investment firm who is a former football player at the University of Virginia and for the Philadelphia Eagles was arrested Wednesday and charged in an alleged $eight million fraud scheme that victimized the elderly and other people.
Merrill Robertson Jr., 36, was accused of conspiracy to commit wire fraud and faces up to 20 many years if convicted, in accordance to the U.S. Attorney’s Workplace.
A civil complaint filed Wednesday with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission against Robertson and Sherman C. Vaughn Jr., 45, each of Chesterfield County. It alleged that they utilised their Midlothian business, Cavalier Union Investments LLC, to defraud far more than 60 investors out of ten million — resulting in $8 million in losses — in a “Ponzi-like” scheme from 2010 until this year.
Vaughn was not charged criminally.
The SEC complaint accuses Robertson, Vaughn, and Cavalier of violating the anti-fraud and registration provisions of federal securities laws and is seeking strict injunctions, the return of allegedly ill-gotten gains with prejudgment interest, and civil penalties.
“Defendants targeted unsophisticated senior citizens, and former football coaches, donors, alumni, and workers of colleges Robertson had attended and induced them to acquire Cavalier’s promissory notes that allegedly paid a fixed fee of return amongst ten and 20 percent yearly,” alleges the SEC complaint.
The SEC alleges: “To commit this fraud, defendants lied about their sophistication, the security and protection of the Cavalier promissory notes, and Cavalier’s economic situation.”
The two were accused in the complaint of portraying themselves as skilled investment experts and Cavalier as a sophisticated organization, “with different divisions, investment money, and investment advisers. They claimed that Cavalier utilised investor funds to invest in a broad selection of company ventures, this kind of as restaurants, real estate, green energy and assisted-residing services.”