CFTC Says Binary Options Scammer Who Defrauded $3.8 Million Can’t Be Found
The US Commodity Futures Trading Commission (CFTC) can’t locate and serve Peter Szatmari, who used to run a binary options scam that had him defrauding people of $3.8 million.
The latest Szatmari case filings are indicating the CFTC has difficulties finding the scammer. On November 25th, the Commission published a Hawaii Star Advice notice, saying it moved the order authorizing it to serve Szatmari to the Hawaii District Court. On October 7, the CFTC filed a five-count complaint against the scammer for alleged violations of the Commodity Exchange Act (U.S.C. pts 1-26 – 2012) and Commission Regulations (C.F.R. pts 1-190 – 2019).
Szatmari Disappeared After Settling with the CFTC
Before filing the complaint, the CFTC tried to settle with Szatmari, and the parties agreed in principle. However, before the settlement documents were executed, Szatmari decided to back out, while his attorney has informed the Commission about no longer representing him. After this, Szatmari disappeared. When his attorney was asked for some contact information, the Commission got a Kahului, Hawaii P.O. Box and this response:
“Mr. Szatmari has instructed me that he does not want me to supply you with any additional information.”
Szatmari Lured Potential Customers with Fraudulent Marketing Materials
As the order and the complaint are saying, Szatmari was luring potential clients with fraudulent marketing materials and conducted 6 marketing so-called campaigns. He was soliciting investors to open binary options accounts and to fund them. Besides, he was recommending brokers and offering automated trading software with free access, saying people can make immense profits without losing or risking anything.
The filings mention that the marketing materials used by Szatmari were misleading and had many false statements, not to mention he didn’t disclose receiving a fee from the recommended brokers for each new account opened or funded. The fee arrangement was why he was recommending the brokers.
Millions of people have viewed and analyzed Szatmari’s solicitations, but only 25,000 opened binary options trading accounts through his offer. Many of them made an initial $250 deposit, while others deposited even more. The CFTC is looking to have Szatmari give full restitution to the people he defrauded, to disgorge his gains obtained through fraudulent activities, to receive a civil monetary penalty and to be banned permanently from trading seeing he violated CFTC regulations and the Commodity Exchange Act.