Feds: Chicago investment manager swindled clients out of $10 million

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A Chicago investment manager swindled his clients and lenders out of more than $10 million over at least a decade, according to the feds.

Shawn Baldwin, 51, faces eight counts of wire fraud, according to the U.S. Attorney’s office.

Baldwin owned and controlled various investment-related firms in Chicago, according to prosecutors. He exaggerated his financial success and professional connections to fraudulently obtain more than $10 million from at least 17 investors and lenders.

Baldwin claimed that compliance officers and professional advisors were affiliated with his firms, when no such relationship existed, prosecutors said.

He also misrepresented and minimized the serious disciplinary actions taken against him by regulators, which included the revocation of his certifications with the Financial Industry Regulatory Authority in 2009, and a permanent prohibition from offering securities sales or investment advice that the State of Illinois imposed in 2013.

Baldwin falsely claimed that their funds would be invested in stocks and other investments products, while he actually spent the money for his own personal benefit, prosecutors said. The alleged scheme began in 2006 and continued until May 2017.

Baldwin, a Hoffman Estates resident, pleaded not guilty at an arraignment Monday in federal court in Chicago, according to the U.S. Attorney’s office. A status hearing is scheduled for 1 p.m. Dec. 28 before U.S. District Judge John Robert Blakey.

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