A Mound woman whose husband pleaded guilty to bilking investors of more than $1 million has been charged for her role in a Ponzi scheme that funded their lavish lifestyle, federal prosecutors said Friday.
Authorities charged Alex Reaves Lundin, 25, with one felony count of conspiracy to commit mail fraud for her role in the scheme they say was orchestrated by her husband, Jeremy Lundin.
In September, Jeremy Lundin, 30, pleaded guilty in U.S. District Court to one count of mail fraud and one count of money laundering, both felonies, after a monthslong FBI and IRS investigation into his company, Big Island Capital, Acting U.S. Attorney Gregory Brooker said in a Friday news release. His sentencing date is Feb. 1.
Alex Lundin identified herself as the chief financial officer of Big Island Capital in her LinkedIn resume, authorities say.
According to his guilty plea, Jeremy Lundin admitted to working through a network of associates and friends to solicit at least 51 investors by promising “exponential growth through options trading,” then taking their money to finance personal trips, buy expensive jewelry and purchase a luxury boat.
From December 2014 to May 2017, Jeremy Lundin lured the victims into a false sense of security by misrepresenting the contents of his brokerage account, where Big Island’s assets were meant to be held for safekeeping, according to the criminal complaint. He once claimed the firm’s capital was $730,000 when, in reality, Lundin had not yet even opened the brokerage account.
As part of the scheme, he provided the victim investors with written materials claiming that the goal of Big Island Capital was to “generate profits with options trading.” Although he could not “guarantee” an exact percent, he would “shoot for” returns of between 40 and 80 percent, according to federal prosecutors.
After Alex Lundin learned that her husband was not following through on his promises to investors, she assisted him with the scheme by soliciting new investors and allegedly lying to other investors, telling them that their money was safe. She allegedly did this despite knowing that investor money had gone toward their personal expenses, federal prosecutors said.
In a June interview with the Star Tribune, she denied having anything to do with the company.