WASHINGTON (Legal Newsline) — Donald Watkins and his companies have been charged with defrauding professional athletes and other investors out of millions, the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) has announced.
The SEC’s complaint, filed
in federal district court in Atlanta, charges that Watkins and his companies, Watkins
Pencor LLC and Masada Resource Group LLC, lied to investors by alleging their
funds would be used to support waste-to-energy ventures. According to the SEC,
their funds were instead spent on Watkins' girlfriend and other personal
expenses, including alimony, past due taxes and credit card bills.
Watkins allegedly also
misled investors by saying a multibillion dollar deal was imminent. Watkins
purportedly told them that Waste Management Inc., a large, international waste
treatment company, was close to acquiring Watkins Pencor, Masada and related
The SEC says interest from Waste Management Inc. never moved
past an initial meeting. The agency believes Watkins told investors negotiations were progressing and the acquisition was looming for more than a
year after the initial meeting.
“We allege that Watkins
duped investors into believing that there was a lucrative transaction on the
horizon, when in fact there was none,” said Walter Jospin, regional director of
the SEC’s Atlanta Regional Office.