FBI: Affinity Fraudster Sued By SEC Launched Follow-Up Scam; Shervin Neman Allegedly Paid Law Firm, Earlier Victims With Money From New Mark — And Then Wrote A Bad Check For $2.35 Million
Neman, 31, also is known as Shervin Davatgarzadeh, the FBI said. The Century City resident was arrested today on a three-count indictment charging him mail fraud and wire fraud, amid allegations he hatched a new fraud scheme after the SEC brought its civil charges in April 2012.
The SEC described Neman last year as the operator of a “purported hedge fund” that married a real-estate flipping scheme involving purported foreclosures to purported opportunities to profit from IPOs conducted by Facebook, Groupon, LinkedIn and Angie’s List.
“The month after the SEC filed its lawsuit, Neman solicited $2 million from another victim with false promises that Neman could obtain pre-IPO shares in Facebook, according to the indictment,” the FBI said. “Neman allegedly used the funds obtained from the new victim to pay, among other things, most of his earlier victims and the law firm representing him in the SEC action. Neman then had victims who had been ‘paid back’ write e-mails saying that Neman did not owe them money, according to the indictment, which goes on to say that Neman used these e-mails as part of his defense in the SEC case. In June 2012, Neman sent to the later victim a $2,235,800 check that purported to be the return on the Facebook investment, but that check bounced, according to the indictment.”