San Francisco Investment Adviser Pleads Guilty To Defrauding Investors
SAN FRANCISCO - Hausmann-Alain Banet (a/k/a Anzoumana Ousmann Gbane, a/k/a Gbane Anzoumana a/k/a Ousmann Gbane, a/k/a Ousmann Gbane Anzounan Banet, a/k/a Ousmann-Alain Gbane) pleaded guilty today to mail fraud and wire fraud, United States Attorney Melinda Haag announced.
In pleading guilty, Banet admitted that from approximately June 2008 through July 2012, he induced numerous individuals to give him money by falsely representing that he, on behalf of his investment management company, Lion Capital Management Group, LLC, would invest the money in hedge funds. Banet admitted that he falsely told these individuals that he had invested their money, but that he actually spent the money for personal and business expenses, all unrelated to investment income. Banet also admitted that, as part of his scheme, he sent quarterly investment account statements to victims in which he falsely stated that the accounts had realized gains. Banet further admitted that, as a result of his scheme, he received approximately $1.3 million from the victim investors.
Banet, 49, of San Francisco, California, was indicted by a federal grand jury on October 2, 2012. He was charged with six counts of wire fraud, eleven counts of mail fraud, and six counts of money laundering. Banet pleaded guilty to two counts of wire fraud and two counts of mail fraud. In his plea agreement, Banet agreed to forfeit his interest in his residence in San Francisco, approximately $78,000 in bank and trading accounts in his name; and his Mercedes Benz. Banet also agreed to pay restitution in an amount to be determined by the Court, but not less than $1.2 million. Banet remains in the custody of the United States Marshal’s Service.
Banet’s sentencing is scheduled for August 6, 2013, at 2:00 p.m. before the U.S. District Court Judge William Alsup in San Francisco. The maximum statutory penalty for each count of wire fraud and mail fraud, in violation of 18 U.S.C. §§ 1343 and 1341, respectively, is 20 years imprisonment and a fine of $250,000 or twice the amount of the fraud. However, any sentence will be imposed by the court only after consideration of the U.S. Sentencing Guidelines and the federal statute governing the imposition of a sentence, 18 U.S.C. § 3553.
Denise Marie Barton is the Assistant United States Attorney who is prosecuting the case with the assistance of Allen Williams, Pat Mahoney, and Elizabeth Garcia. The prosecution is the result of an approximately five month investigation by the Federal Bureau of Investigation, with the assistance of the Securities and Exchange Commission and Immigration and Customs Enforcement.