Guy De Chimay told investors he helped his cousin, the Prince of Belgium, to invest $200 million of the royal family’s money in America, in a ploy to convince the group they should invest in a real estate vehicle that would earn them annual returns of 12%.De Chimay is a distant relative of the royals (and shares their surname) but certainly wasn’t their money manager, according to the SEC.
Now De Chimay is going to prison for between three to nine years for pilfering $7 million from those clients, the Daily News reports. He’s also been ordered to pay more than $6.6 million in restitution.
The “charismatic, silver-haired figure who traveled frequently across the world” admitted to grand larceny, securities fraud and other charges in February.
“His reputation helped earn him a spot on a reality television series, “Wall Street Warriors,” in which he was portrayed as a successful money manager,” the WSJ reported.
The stolen funds went into his ponzi scheme, and were also used to buy property in the Hamptons, make car payments and settle legal bills for his divorce.
According to the AP, De Chimay,
[U]sed those lies and bogus bank statements to persuade a half-dozen people to put money into an investment vehicle that promised to return 12 per cent a year by making short-term loans to real estate projects and carefully vetted companies, according to prosecutors and the SEC.
But “fraud contaminated every aspect of (that) investment vehicle,” the SEC said in court papers last year. Clients’ cash went to de Chimay’s personal expenses, to some of his other ventures and investors and to pay rent for his firm, Chimay Capital Management Inc., the SEC said.
His grandfather was part of the Belgian royal family but renounced his ties and emigrated to the U.S, De Chimay’s lawyer said.