|The Securities and Exchange Commission has charged Craig Karlis, Ahmet Devrim Akyil and their company Boston Trading and Research LLC (BTR) with operating a foreign currency fraud scheme. According to the SEC, Mr. Karlis and Mr. Akyil solicited investments from 750 investors from around the world, ultimately raising $40 million to invest in Forex, BTR’s foreign currency trading venture. Instead of investing their clients’ money, however, Mr. Karlis and Mr. Akyil reportedly misappropriated the funds for BTR’s in-house expenses and their personal use. After BTR’s collapse in September of 2008 the company’s remaining capital was returned to investors, but the amounts totaled only 10% of investors’ account balances. “Akyil and Karlis secretly enriched themselves while many of the defrauded investors lost their retirement savings and financial security,” stated David Bergers, the director of the SEC’s Boston Regional Office.|
By investing with BTR investors granted Mr. Akyil a limited power of attorney, allowing him to control fund trading in Forex. BTR promised investors transparency and constant access to their account information, and furthermore assured them that, thanks to an automatic stop-loss program, they could not lose more than a certain percentage of their funds. In reality, BTR simply investors with falsified account statements that misrepresented their daily account activity, balance and equity positions - and furthermore, no such stop-loss program existed.