In a case that epitomizes financial deception and betrayal of trust, an Orange County businessman has been handed a sentence of 63 months in federal prison for defrauding investors out of a staggering $6.2 million. Jacques Poujade, the owner and chief financial officer of Tri-Emerald Financial Group, used false promises and a series of lies to lure victims into investing in his company, which he claimed was about to go public on the Nasdaq stock exchange. Through manipulation and deceit, Poujade was able to swindle individuals out of their life savings, leaving a trail of devastation in his wake. This article delves into the intricacies of the case, revealing the full extent of the fraudulent scheme and the severe consequences Poujade is now facing for his deceitful actions.
Orange County Businessman Sentenced to 63 Months in Federal Prison for Scamming Investors Out of $6.2 Million
Recently, an Orange County businessman was sentenced to 63 months in federal prison for defrauding investors out of $6.2 million. This article provides an overview of the case and sheds light on the details of the scam, as well as the investigation and prosecution that led to the businessman’s sentencing.
The individual in question is Jacques Poujade, the owner and chief financial officer of Tri-Emerald Financial Group, a realty services company located in Lake Forest, California. Tri-Emerald operated as a residential mortgage lender, funding loans with the intent to sell them to financial institutions. However, neither Tri-Emerald nor its securities were registered with the United States Securities and Exchange Commission.
Poujade fraudulently obtained nearly $6.2 million from investors by making false promises, particularly regarding the company’s initial public offering (IPO) and the potential share price on the Nasdaq stock exchange. These false promises and misrepresentations led to significant financial losses for the victims.
Details of the Scam
Poujade sold unregistered securities to a victim investor between February 2015 and May 2020. He convinced the victim that Tri-Emerald was about to go public on Nasdaq and that investing in the company at $10 per share would yield significant returns. However, Tri-Emerald had not completed the necessary steps for an IPO, nor did Poujade have any underwriters engaged as he claimed. Instead, he used a substantial portion of the funds for Tri-Emerald operating expenses and personal expenditures, rather than the promised IPO costs.
The victim’s trust was abused, and Poujade betrayed her by draining her entire life savings. In total, Poujade fraudulently obtained approximately $5,255,600 from this victim.
Fraud against Additional Victims
Poujade also defrauded another victim and their investment group by convincing them to purchase 30-day promissory notes issued by LendPlus Holdings, another company owned by Poujade. These notes were supposed to increase Tri-Emerald’s line of credit, enabling the company to fund more mortgages. However, instead of repaying the investors at the end of the term, Poujade continuously rolled over their funds, making false claims about their money being safe in a reserve account. In reality, he used a significant portion of the funds for other purposes, including lulling payments to previous investors and personal expenses. Approximately $915,000 was fraudulently obtained from this group of victims.
Investigation and Prosecution
The Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) and the Department of Housing and Urban Development Office of Inspector General conducted an investigation into Poujade’s fraudulent activities. As a result, he was charged with securities fraud and prosecuted by the Corporate and Securities Fraud Strike Force.
Any media inquiries regarding this case should be directed to the following contact information:
- Ciaran McEvoy
- Public Information Officer
- Phone: (213) 894-4465
For further reference, the following press releases highlight similar cases of financial fraud:
- “Former Malibu Resident Sentenced to More Than 15 Years in Prison for Conning Investors with Bogus Promises of Discounted Alibaba IPO Shares”
- “Founder of Beverly Hills ‘Gentlemen Timepieces’ Consignment Store Charged with Conning Victims in Luxury Watch Ponzi-Type Scheme”
- “Westwood Man Sentenced to More Than 9 Years in Prison for Long-Running Surety Bond Scam that Caused More Than $5 Million in Losses”
The sentencing of Jacques Poujade serves as a reminder of the importance of due diligence when investing and conducting business. It highlights the severe consequences that await individuals who engage in fraudulent activities. As always, it is crucial for investors to exercise caution, research thoroughly, and seek professional advice to mitigate the risk of falling victim to such scams.
For further information and updates on similar cases in the Central District of California, please refer to the following contact information:
- Central District of California
- Address: 312 North Spring Street Suite 1200, Los Angeles, California 90012
- Phone: 213-894-2400
- Fax: 213-894-0141