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Four Jailed Over $18m Investment Fraud

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Four men have been jailed for their involvement in an eight-year investment fraud and money laundering scheme.

More than a dozen people around the world were scammed out of more than $18 million in the fraud.

The men are:

  • John C. Nock, 55, of Fayetteville, Arkansas
  • Brian Brittsan, 67, of Boise, Idaho
  • Kevin Griffith, 68, of Orem, Utah
  • Alexander Ituma, 57, of Lehi, Utah
  • Court documents showed between 2013 and 2021, the four men used an investment firm called The Brittingham Group to run the scam.

    They claimed they had access to exclusive investment opportunities, including deals involving the monetization of foreign bank guarantees.

    The four men falsely represented the nature of their investment offerings and made guarantees to victims regarding the safety and security of their funds.

    “For nearly a decade, the defendants brazenly and repeatedly lied to investors"

    They also promised victims outsized returns, to be paid in a short period of time, which they could not and did not ever produce.

    Nock and Brittsan directed victims to send their money to bank accounts Griffith, Ituma and other co-conspirators controlled.

    They also created fake documents to send to their victims to make their investments appear legitimate and progressing.

    Once the money was in the hands of the co-conspirators, the defendants transferred it through a complex web of worldwide bank accounts. 

    Principal Deputy Assistant Attorney General Nicole M. Argentieri, head of the Justice Department’s Criminal Division, said: “For nearly a decade, the defendants brazenly and repeatedly lied to investors, defrauding them out of more than $18 million and laundering the proceeds of their crime through a complex web of bank accounts around the world.”

    “The defendants have now been held to account for their crimes. The sentences imposed last week reflect the Justice Department’s commitment to rooting out investment fraud and protecting Americans’ financial security.”

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    Christopher J. Altemus Jr, Special Agent in Charge of the IRS Criminal Investigation (IRS-CI) Dallas Field Office, added: "For years, the defendants’ blatant and egregious investment fraud scheme used false promises to bilk investors out of millions of dollars of their hard-earned money.

    “IRS-CI is proud of their joint efforts with the Justice Department and the FBI to hold Nock, Brittsan, Griffith, and Ituma accountable for their greed. The women and men of IRS-CI will continue to band together with their law enforcement partners to pursue those who commit financial crimes and steal from trusting individuals.”

    The men were convicted in August 2023 of conspiracy to commit wire fraud, multiple counts of wire fraud, and conspiracy to commit money laundering.

    Nock was also convicted of money laundering for using victim funds to pay a prior debt unrelated to The Brittingham Group.

    The Sentences

    • John C. Nock was sentenced on March 14 to 20 years and 10 months in prison.
    • Brian Brittsan was sentenced on March 14 to 10 years in prison.
    • Kevin Griffith was sentenced on March 15 to 12 years and six months in prison.
    • Alexander Ituma was sentenced on March 15 to eight years and four months in prison

    IRS-CI and the FBI investigated the case. The U.S. Attorney’s Office for the Western District of Arkansas provided invaluable assistance.

    Trial Attorneys Philip Trout, Vasanth Sridharan, and Sara A. Hallmark of the Criminal Division’s Fraud Section prosecuted the case.

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