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Alliance Development and William Snyder fined USD3.65m in anti-fraud action

Alliance Development of Nevada and William Snyder of Washington have been ordered to pay restitution of USD550,000 and civil monetary penalties of USD1.65m and USD1.45m respectively to settle an enforcement action charging them with commodity pool fraud.

In addition, Synder's daughter and a former Alliance principal, Christi Wilson of Reno, Nevada, has been ordered to disgorge USD220,000 in payments that she received from Alliance's and Snyder's fraudulent commodity pool operation.

The consent order, entered on 10 December 2008 by the Honorable Larry R Hicks of the US District Court for the District of Nevada, also permanently bars Alliance, Snyder and Wilson from engaging in any commodity-related activity.

The order stems from a Commodity Futures Trading Commission complaint filed on 28 September 2006 in CFTC v. Alliance Development.

According to the order, from at least October 2004 to at least February 2006, Alliance (an unregistered commodity pool operator) and Snyder (an unregistered commodity pool operator and an unregistered associated person of Alliance) used ten sham companies and aliases to fraudulently solicit others to invest in commodity pools that purportedly traded, among other things, commodity futures contracts.

The order also found that Alliance and Snyder misrepresented profit potential to pool participants, neglected to advise pool participants of the risks inherent in trading futures, failed to provide required pool disclosure documents to pool participants, and provided a false futures account statement to at least two pool participants.

Alliance and Snyder solicited USD550,000 in pool participant funds, most of which they misappropriated to pay Snyder's and Wilson's personal expenses.

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