State: Ponzi scheme involving Utah rare coin dealer 'larger than previously alleged'

State: Ponzi scheme involving Utah rare coin dealer 'larger than previously alleged'

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SALT LAKE CITY — More victims have been identified and more suspects named in a multimillion-dollar Ponzi scheme involving a Utah precious metals and rare coin business, according to state officials.

On Monday, the Utah Department of Commerce along with the Commodity Futures Trading Commission, the Division of Securities and the Utah Attorney General's Office announced that an amended complaint was filed accusing Denise Gunderson Rust and Joshua Daniel Rust of participating in a scheme with Rust Rare Coin Inc. to solicit millions from investors since 2013 "for the purported purpose of pooling their money to purchase silver," according to a statement from the Commerce Department.

In November, a federal complaint was filed by the Securities and Exchange Commission against Rust Rare Coin Inc. and owner Gaylen Dean Rust. Denise Rust is Gaylen's wife and Joshua Rust is his son.

According to the amended complaint, the alleged fraud committed by Rust Rare Coin "is larger than previously alleged and involves more than 430 individuals and at least $200 million in investor funds."

Denise and Joshua Rust "knew the Silver Pool was a fraudulent scheme. Denise Rust and Joshua Rust signed checks issued to Silver Pool investors knowing that these checks were Ponzi payments involving money contributed by other investors," according to the Commerce Department's statement.

In November, U.S. District Judge Tena Campbell issued a restraining order freezing the assets of Rust Rare Coin and allowing state and federal officials to "inspect all relevant records," according to the statement.

The company is accused of tricking investors since 2008 into believing it was "pooling investor money for the purpose of entering into contracts of sale for silver."

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Pat Reavy is a longtime police and courts reporter. He joined the team in 2021, after many years of reporting at the Deseret News and KSL NewsRadio before that.


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