Allen Giltman Admits
Role in $50M Wire and Securities Fraud Scheme
January 10, 2022
A California man today admitted conspiring to commit
wire and securities fraud in connection with his role in a $50
million internet-enabled fraud scheme, U.S. Attorney Philip R. Sellinger announced.
Allen Giltman, 56, of Irvine, California, pleaded guilty by
videoconference before U.S. District Judge John Michael Vazquez to
an information charging him with one count of conspiracy to commit
wire fraud and one count of conspiracy to commit securities fraud.
According to documents filed in this case and statements made in
From 2012 to October 2020, Giltman and others engaged in an
internet-based financial fraud scheme, which generally involved the
creation of fraudulent websites to solicit funds from investors. At
times, the fraudulent websites were designed to closely resemble
websites being operated by actual, well-known, and publicly
reputable financial institutions; at other times, the fraudulent
websites were designed to resemble legitimate-seeming financial
institutions that did not exist.
Victims of the fraud scheme typically discovered the fraudulent
websites via internet searches. The fraudulent websites advertised
various types of investment opportunities, most prominently the
purchase of certificates of deposit, or CDs. The fraudulent websites
advertised higher than average rates of return on the CDs to lure
The fraudulent websites used a variety of means to appear legitimate
and to gain and maintain the trust of prospective investors,
including: (a) displaying the actual names and logos of real
financial institutions; (b) purporting that the institutions were
members of or regulated by the Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation
(FDIC), Financial Industry Regulatory Authority (FINRA), the
Securities Investor Protection Corporation, or New York Stock
Exchange; (c) claiming that deposits made to the institutions
associated with the fraudulent websites were FDIC-insured; and (d)
using FINRA or FDIC member identification numbers issued to real
financial institutions and real FINRA broker-dealers.
After discovering one of the fraudulent websites, victims would
contact an individual – identified in the information as Giltman –
by telephone or email as directed on the sites. During his
communications with victims, Giltman impersonated real FINRA
broker-dealers by using their names and FINRA Central Registration
Depository numbers. He would then provide the victims with
applications and wiring instructions for the purchase of a CD. The
funds wired by the victims would then be moved to various domestic
and international bank accounts, including accounts in Russia, the
Republic of Georgia, Hong Kong, and Turkey. None of the victims
received a CD after wiring the funds.
To date, law enforcement has identified at least 150 fraudulent
websites created as part of the scheme. At least 70 victims of the
fraud scheme nationwide, including in New Jersey, collectively
transmitted approximately $50 million that they believed to be
The wire fraud conspiracy charge carries a maximum penalty of 20
years and a $250,000 fine, or twice the gross amount of gain or loss
from the offense, whichever is greatest. The securities fraud charge
carries a maximum penalty of five years in prison and a $250,000
fine, or twice the gross amount of gain or loss from the offense,
whichever is greatest. Sentencing is scheduled for May 10, 2022.
The U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) also filed a civil
complaint against Giltman today based on the same conduct.
U.S. Attorney Sellinger credited special agents of the FBI, under
the direction of Special Agent in Charge George M. Crouch in Newark,
with the investigation leading to today’s guilty plea. He also
thanked the SEC for the assistance provided by its Enforcement
The government is represented by Assistant U.S. Attorney Anthony P.
Torntore of the U.S. Attorney’s Cybercrime Unit in Newark.