Sunday, April 22, 2012
The SEC charged Gabriel and Marco Bitran, a Boston-based father-son duo of hedge fund managers and their firms, with securities fraud for misleading investors about their investment strategy and past performance. The SEC’s investigation found that the Bitrans raised millions of dollars for their hedge funds through GMB Capital Management LLC and GMB Capital Partners LLC by falsely telling investors they had a lengthy track record of success based on actual trades using real money. In truth, the Bitrans knew the track record was based on back-tested hypothetical simulations. The Bitrans also misled investors in certain hedge funds to believe they used quantitative optimal pricing models devised by Gabriel Bitran to invest in exchange-traded funds (ETFs) and other liquid securities. Instead, they merely invested the money almost entirely in other hedge funds. GMB Capital Management later provided false documents to SEC staff examining the firm’s claims in marketing materials of a successful track record.
The Bitrans agreed to be barred from the securities industry and pay a total of $4.8 million to settle the SEC’s charges.