CFTC suspects head of FX scam W Trade Group has fled the US
The US authorities cannot locate the head of fraudulent Forex scheme W Trade Group LLC (WTG). This becomes clear from documents filed by the Commodity Futures Trading Commission (CFTC) with the Florida Southern District Court.
The CFTC is asking the Court to authorize alternate service of the summons and complaint by publication as to Larry Ramos Mendoza.
On February 7, 2022, the Commission filed a civil enforcement action alleging that, from at least June 2013 through June 2020, WTG, by and through the actions of its employees and agents, including but not limited to, Ramos, and Carvajales, fraudulently solicited customers by phone, the internet, and U.S. mail, to open individual trading accounts in order to trade in, among other things, commodity futures, retail foreign currency on a leveraged or margined basis and/or options on commodity futures contracts.
After fraudulently soliciting customer funds, the Commission alleges that WTG and Ramos misappropriated more than $19 million from at least 220 customers to pay for personal and business expenses and diverted funds deposited by new customers to make Ponzi scheme-like payments to earlier customers who requested account withdrawals.
Moreover, WTG, by and through the actions of Ramos, fabricated account statements in an effort to prevent WTG customers from learning that they had misappropriated customer funds.
On April 13, 2021, the United States Attorney for the Southern District of Florida (AUSA) filed a Complaint against Ramos. The Complaint charged Ramos with engaging in a conspiracy to commit mail and wire fraud. On April 23, 2021, a grand jury returned an Indictment on all counts.
After Ramos was released on bond with an ankle monitoring device, he removed his ankle monitoring device and fled. Based on conversations with the AUSA, the FBI has been unable to determine Ramos’s whereabouts and suspects he may have fled the country.