LAWFUEL – The Legal Newswire – R. Alexander Acosta, United States Attorney for the Southern District of Florida, Jonathan I. Solomon, Special Agent in Charge, Federal Bureau of Investigation, and Don B. Saxon, Commissioner, Florida Department of Financial Regulation, announced today the filing of an Information charging defendants Gerald Milligan, 47, and Andrew Mariani, 31, both of Wellington, Florida with conspiracy to commit wire fraud, in violation of Title 18, United States Code, Section 371. Each defendant faces a maximum penalty of five years’ imprisonment, a $250,000 fine, 3 years supervised release, and restitution. An initial appearance for Mariani is scheduled before United States Magistrate Judge Linnea R. Johnson on Wednesday, November 7, 2007, and for Milligan on Friday, November 9, 2007.
As set forth in the Information, Milligan ran an internet securities website through a company called Options Management Specialists, Inc. (OMSI). Mariani, a licensed stock broker, had an undisclosed affiliation with OMSI. Between August, 2005 and June, 2007, OMSI received over $1.1 million from approximately 100 investors. Approximately $150,000 of the funds were traded and mostly lost by Mariani. The remainder of the funds were used to support Milligan’s lavish lifestyle, to make approximately $30,000 in payments and loans to Mariani, and to make purported investment payments to the original investors. To perpetuate the scheme and lull investors into a false sense of security, Milligan, using various aliases and with the knowledge of Mariani, sent e-mails to investors falsely reporting the successful investment of their funds. When investors began requesting return of principal and voicing suspicions about the company, Milligan sent e-mails to investors falsely claiming their monies had been lost due to poor investments in certain failing companies. Mariani researched and gave the names of the failing companies to Milligan for this purpose.
Mr. Acosta commended the investigative efforts of the Federal Bureau of Investigation and the Office of Financial Regulation, State of Florida. This case is being prosecuted by Assistant United States Attorney Carolyn Bell.
A copy of this press release may be found on the website of the United States Attorney’s Office for the Southern District of Florida at www.usdoj.gov/usao/fls. Related court documents and information may be found on the website of the District Court for the Southern District of Florida at www.flsd.uscourts.gov or on http://pacer.flsd.uscourts.gov.