Court orders penalties, restitution in Ponzi scheme

The U.S. Commodities Futures Trading Commission said Friday that it obtained $25.7 million in civil monetary penalties and restitution in a federal court consent order against CRE Capital Corp. and its president and owner, James G. Ossie of Dawsonville.

In January 2009 the commission charged the defendants with operating a $25 million foreign currency Ponzi scheme involving more than 100 customers.  The court order requires CRE to pay $5.7 million in restitution to defrauded customers and a $15.2 million civil monetary penalty. The order also requires Ossie to pay a $4.8 million civil penalty.

Last year, Ossie pleaded guilty to criminal charges based on the same conduct alleged in the commission's complaint. He was sentenced to 82 months in prison and ordered to pay more than $18.7 million in criminal restitution to the victims of the scheme.