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CHICAGO — A United States Navy veteran has been indicted on federal criminal charges for allegedly swindling retired and active-duty Navy members in an investment fraud scheme.
ROBERT L. MURRAY, JR, 43, of Chicago, was charged with four counts of wire fraud in an indictment returned Monday in U.S. District Court in Chicago. Arraignment is set for Dec. 16, 2022, at 11:30 a.m. before U.S. District Judge Manish S. Shah.
The indictment was announced by John R. Lausch, Jr., United States Attorney for the Northern District of Illinois; and John S. Morales, Acting Special Agent-in-Charge of the Chicago Field Office of the FBI. Valuable assistance was provided by the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission. The government is represented by Assistant U.S. Attorney Brian Havey.
The indictment alleges that after retiring from the Navy, Murray occasionally traded securities online from his residence. He later founded an investment fund called Deep Dive Strategies LLC, which purported to invest in publicly traded securities. Murray solicited investors, including retired and active-duty Navy members, by portraying himself on social media as a skilled and successful options trader with an effective algorithm for trading securities, the indictment states.
The indictment alleges that Murray failed to invest or trade with all of the money provided to him by investors, instead using a portion of their funds to pay his personal expenses, including shopping, restaurant, and travel expenses. With the investor funds that Murray did use to conduct trades, he lost most of those funds by placing a highly risky bet on the “meme stock” GameStop, the indictment alleges. When investors later requested an accounting of their funds, Murray disregarded or refused their requests, the indictment states.
As a result of the scheme, investors lost all of the funds they entrusted to Murray to invest on their behalf, an amount totaling more than $342,000, the indictment states.
The public is reminded that an indictment is not evidence of guilt. The defendant is presumed innocent and entitled to a fair trial at which the government has the burden of proving guilt beyond a reasonable doubt. Each count of wire fraud is punishable by up to 20 years in federal prison. If convicted, the Court must impose a reasonable sentence under federal statutes and the advisory U.S. Sentencing Guidelines.