Utah coin dealer accused of fraud in $170 million Ponzi scheme involving silver


By Jessica Miller
Salt Lake Tribune
Friday, November 16, 2018

A federal judge has frozen the assets of a Utah rare-coin dealer after state officials accused the business of defrauding hundreds of people in a precious-metals Ponzi scheme.

A civil complaint was filed Thursday by the Securities and Exchange Commission against Gaylen Dean Rust and his company, Rust Rare Coin Inc.

The Utah Department of Commerce said in a news release today that Rust had fraudulently obtained more than $170 million from people in Utah and 16 other states in a scheme involving silver.

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The complaint alleges that for more than 10 years, Rust "tricked" investors who believed they were pooling their money so Rust and his company would sell silver held in a pool as market prices rose, and buy silver for the pool when prices fell. Investors were told this would lead to "extraordinarily high profits."

But it was a sham, authorities say.

Rust told investors the silver was kept at a depository in Salt Lake City or Los Angeles -- even though the company never purchased or stored anything of that value at those locations. And the investor money was not used to buy silver, either. ...

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