Colorado Crimes: Read the indictment in an alleged oil-and-gas investment scam
"Three former Colorado Springs residents were indicted by a federal grand jury in Denver this week on charges of conspiracy and fraud for selling about $1.6 million of oil and gas investments in projects they did not own, Acting U.S. Attorney David Gaouette and FBI Special Agent in Charge James Davis announced today..."
That's the beginning of an account by the U.S. Department of Justice about bustees Christine Michelle Thompson, Jeffrey Mark Zamorsky and Jesse Anthony Aguilar -- but there's a lot more to their alleged scheme than that. Check out the complete press release after the jump, and read the latest court document by clicking here.
U.S. Department of Justice press release:
May 8, 2009
THREE FORMER COLORADO SPRINGS RESIDENTS INDICTED FOR CONSPIRACY AND FRAUD
DENVER - Three former Colorado Springs residents were indicted by a federal grand jury in Denver this week on charges of conspiracy and fraud for selling about $1.6 million of oil and gas investments in projects they did not own, Acting U.S. Attorney David Gaouette and FBI Special Agent in Charge James Davis announced today. Christine Michelle Thompson, age 40, Jeffrey Mark Zamorsky, age 33, and Jesse Anthony Aguilar, age 42, were indicted on Tuesday, May 5, 2009. Specifically, the purpose of the conspiracy of their fraud was for the three defendants to falsely obtain money to enrich themselves and each other through their joint business operations. Thompson is in custody without bond pending a resolution of her case. Zamorsky and Aguilar are fugitives being sought by the FBI.
Christine M. Thompson (also known as Christine Michelle Zamorsky and Christine Michelle Aguilar), and Jeffrey Mark Zamorsky (also known as Jeffrey Zamorsky), were first charged by Criminal Complaint on July 25, 2008. Jesse Anthony Aguilar (also known as Tony Aguilar), was first charged by Criminal Complaint on February 2, 2009. All three were indicted by a federal grand jury in Denver on May 5, 2009.
According to the indictment, around 2001 and 2002 Christine Thompson married Jesse Aguilar. In March of 2002 Thompson was convicted of a felony, namely fraudulent use of identifying information, in Texas. During that same month Aguilar was convicted of a felony, specifically conspiracy to commit mail fraud, wire fraud, and securities fraud, also in Texas. Around 2006 and 2007, Thompson married Jeffrey Zamorsky. Subsequently, in 2008 she again married.
In June 2006, Zamorsky formed ICON World Resources. In September 2007, Zamorsky formed SUNCO Resources. The defendants obtained information about existing and potential oil and gas wells from companies in the oil and gas industry. In some of those dealings, they negotiated to purchase interests in drilling projects, but they never completed any such purchase transactions. However, in the course of the negotiations, the defendants allegedly obtained the oil and gas companies' proprietary information about drilling operations and prospects, including, but not limited to, maps, seismic charts, correspondence, budgets, projections, and historical drilling data.
As part of the fraud, the three operated sales offices in Texas, Colorado, Arizona, and elsewhere, employing sales representatives who made sales solicitations to prospective investors. The defendants provided the sales staff with lead lists and false, fraudulent, and misleading offering materials for ICON's and SUNCO's supposed Ohio, Michigan, and Colorado oil and gas drilling operations, which information the sales representatives communicated to investors. Thompson, Aguilar, and Zamorsky made and caused to be made false and misleading statements to investors. In addition, the three omitted disclosing other information to investors.
"Frauds, such as this, need to be prosecuted to protect the integrity of our free market system," said Acting U.S. Attorney David Gaouette.
"I would like to extend our appreciation to the Security and Exchange Commission or the outstanding assistance they provided in this case," said FBI Special Agent in Charge James Davis.
If convicted the defendants face not more than 5 years in federal prison, and up to a $250,000 fine, for 1 count of conspiracy, as well as each of the 46 counts of securities fraud, 6 counts of mail fraud, and 11 counts of wire fraud.
This case was investigated by the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) with assistance from the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC).
The case is being prosecuted by Assistant U.S. Attorney John Haried.
Get the ICYMI: Today's Top Stories Newsletter Our daily newsletter delivers quick clicks to keep you in the know
Catch up on the day's news and stay informed with our daily digest of the most popular news, music, food and arts stories in Denver, delivered to your inbox Monday through Friday.