Litigation Release No. 17367 / February 20, 2002
SEC CHARGES ANTHONY BURGES AND BURGES ASSET MANAGEMENT WITH DEFRAUDING LIMITED PARTNERSHIP INVESTORS
Securities and Exchange Commission v. Anthony Burges and Burges Asset Managemnt, Inc., Civil Action No. 02 Civ. 1284 (S.D.N.Y.)(VM)
The Securities and Exchange Commission announced today that it filed an enforcement action charging Anthony P. Burges and his related company, Burges Asset Management, Inc. ("Burges Asset") with defrauding investors in two limited partnerships, Burges Capital, L.P. and Burges Investment Partners, L.P. (the "Burges Funds" or the "Funds").
The Complaint, filed on February 19th, in the United States District Court for the Southern District of New York, alleges that from at least March 2001 until at least June 2001, Burges and Burges Asset sold interests in the Funds, which purportedly invested and traded in foreign currency, and that they did so by means of false representations about the use of investors' funds and Burges' prior trading performance.
The Complaint names as defendants:
The Complaint charges the defendants with violating Section 17(a) of the Securities Act and Section 10(b) of the Securities Exchange Act and Rule 10b-5 thereunder, and seeks permanent injunctive relief, disgorgement, and civil penalties.
At the same time it filed the Complaint, the Commission also filed an application for an order permitting expedited discovery, prohibiting the destruction of documents, and requiring the defendants to provide an accounting (the "Application").
According to the Complaint and the declaration filed in support of the Application:
* From at least March until at least June 2001, Burges raised approximately $136,000 for the Burges Funds from at least twenty investors.
* In soliciting investments in the Funds, Burges represented that Funds' assets would be used to invest and trade in foreign currency, including Euro and Yen. Burges also told prospective investors that he had been highly successful investing in foreign currency in the past. In at least one instance he represented that he had achieved returns of about 50% per month on his trading.
* Burges made similar performance claims to investors after they had invested, telling at least four of them that their investment was growing at the rate of approximately 50% per month.
* These representations were false. It appears that Burges did not use investors' funds to trade foreign currency, but rather used them for personal expenses and other purposes not disclosed to investors.
* All three foreign exchange brokers that Burges claims to have used to execute trades and hold the Funds' assets have stated that they had no accounts open for Burges or the Funds during 2001.
* Two securities accounts maintained by Burges reflect the deposit of approximately $15,000 of investor funds and the use of those funds for purposes other than currency trading, including personal expenses of Burges. As of the end of 2001, there were virtually no funds or other assets in those accounts.
* Although he promised to do so, Burges failed to provide the Commission with documents it requested to substantiate Burges' claimed use of investor funds and investment performance.
The court granted the Commission's application, entering an order permitting expedited discovery, prohibiting the destruction of documents, and requiring the defendants to provide an accounting. The litigation is pending.