SEC wants judge to jail alleged Ponzi schemer Trevor Cook

For Trevor Cook, accused with a syndicated radio talk show host of running a $190-million Ponzi scheme from the Van Dusen Mansion in Minneapolis, the law appears to be tightening its grip.

The Securities and Exchange Commission has asked a federal judge to find Cook in contempt of court, take away his passport and put him behind bars for hiding his financial dealings. Arguments on the SEC's motion will be heard at 2 p.m. Friday.

As bilked investors looked on last week, the once high-flying investor in foreign currencies stymied SEC lawyers in court by asserting his Fifth Amendment right to not implicate himself in a crime. One of those who lost everything in his scheme called Cook "scum."

The SEC has frozen the assets of Cook and syndicated radio show host Patrick J. Kiley of Minneapolis. It alleges that the two, and their corporate entities, raised more than $190 million over a three year period and victimized more than 1,000 investors between 2006 and 2009.

In addition, the pair allegedly made $51 million in Ponzi-like payments to earlier investors, and placed $108 million of investors' funds into banking and trading accounts in the names of their various shell companies.

The landmark Van Dusen Mansion on LaSalle Avenue South was purchased with some of the profits of a massive Ponzi scheme, and then used by its owner as a place to meet with potential victims, according to court documents on file with the SEC.

You can download the original 50-page SEC complaint by clicking here.

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