Ponzi Guy Steven R. Green Sentenced

The people cheated out of $3.3 million won’t get their money back, by Judge George Lindberg, who got his start in politics in Crystal Lake in 1966 when he was elected state representative, sentenced Steven R. Green of Winnetka to six and a half years in prison. The U.S. Attorney’s press release follows:


CHICAGO — A north suburban man was sentenced today to 6½ years in federal prison for  cheating victims out of more than $3.3 million dollars they invested in purported business opportunities with an investment banking firm that he owned and operated.

The defendant, Steven R. Green, pleaded guilty last December to one count of wire fraud for making fraudulent misrepresentations to investors and using the money he obtained from the investors to pay for business and personal expenses.

U.S. District Judge George Lindberg imposed the 78-month prison term, announced  Patrick J. Fitzgerald, United States Attorney for the Northern District of Illinois, and Robert D. Grant, Special Agent-in-Charge of the Chicago Office of the Federal Bureau of Investigation.

Green, 51, of Winnetka, was also ordered to pay restitution totaling $3,345,400 and to forfeit $1.98 million and a 2004 Range Rover.  He  was an owner and managing senior partner of Blackwater Capital Group, Inc., which he operated from his residence, and which recruited institutional investors and placed a capital into its client companies.  Green was ordered to begin serving his sentence on Oct. 26.

In pleading guilty, Green admitted that between December 2007 and August 2008, based on his misrepresentations, 21 individual clients of Garden State Securities, a New Jersey brokerage and financial planning firm, agreed to invest a total of $1.98 million in Blackwater Capital client U.S. Drillers, Inc.

The capital placement contract provided that Garden State investors’ money would be placed in an escrow account, which would be controlled by a third party, before being invested with U.S. Drillers.

Instead of directing the investors’ money into the escrow account, however, Green kept the funds in bank accounts that he controlled and used the money for his own benefit, including for paying such business and personal expenses as restaurant tabs, travel, and purchasing the 2004 Range Rover.

In addition, Green admitted that between October 2008 and February 2009, he fraudulently obtained $250,000 from an additional victim who agreed to purchase shares of Blackwater Capital.

Green, instead of using the money to operate the business, used the money for himself.

Green also admitted that in 2007 he fraudulently obtained $1,115,400 from 14 investors who thought they were participating in a reverse takeover by a Blackwater Capital client, OPE Holdings, of Venpath Investments, Inc., a publicly traded shell company.

The chief executive of OPE reimbursed the victims for their losses, thus sustaining the entire loss individually.

The government was represented by Assistant U.S. Attorney Erika Csicsila.


Ponzi Guy Steven R. Green Sentenced — 3 Comments

  1. Reading of the scheme of yet another “investment banker” turned Ponzi operator really irks me.

    My family, and a group of other investors “lent” money to this guy when advised to by a trusted colleague.

    We were NEVER contacted about the return of said funds, restitution, or any form of compensation.

    How unfair is that?

    No wonder… we’re Canadian!

    If the law enforcement officials want to talk, we’d sure be happy to ensure that this THIEF spends more time in jail.

    He can share a cell with Madoff for all we care.

  2. As a recent college graduate I worked for a few months for Blackwater Capital. In fact I was the first member of the company to contact OPE’s management team and set up the call between my bosses and them.

    Things did seem fishy about the company. I quit after a few months (about a year before the fraud allegedly began), and truthfully I’m not surprised that they turned out to be foxes. For example my boss recommended that I read “The 48 Laws of Power” — a book about manipulating people.

    I feel embarrassed, though, that now this is an albatross around my neck.

  3. This guy’s fraudulent activities date back well before 2006.

    He took money from me in 2001and I know I will never see it again.

    He belongs in prison for life.

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