Ex-University of Georgia student gets more time to respond to SEC’s fraud allegations

Maria Nikolova

Syed Arham Arbab, who operated Artis Proficio Capital Investments and Artis Proficio Capital Management, gets time extension until August 1, 2019.

The legal action against Syed Arham Arbab, a former student at the University of Georgia, and two entities under his operation and control – Artis Proficio Capital Investments, LLC (APCI) and Artis Proficio Capital Management, LLC (APCM), continues at the Georgia Middle District Court. Arbab and the entities he controlled are charged with fraud.

Arbab, who is proceeding “pro se” (he is representing himself in Court), has managed to secure extension of time to file his reply to the fraud allegations against him, brought by the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC). On June 24, 2019, Judge Clay D Land issued an order setting a new deadline for Arbab to answer the SEC’s complaint – August 1, 2019.

According to the SEC’s Complaint, between at least May 2018 and as recently as May 17, 2019, Arbab, acting individually or through APCI and APCM, offered and sold investments in a purported hedge fund, called Artis Proficio Capital. He promised very high rates of return, and sent investors account updates purporting to substantiate those claims. Arbab also offered and sold certain “bond agreements,” which function like promissory notes.

In May 2018, Arbab began soliciting investors for investments in the Fund, which he told investors he managed and controlled. He represented to investors that he had already finished his undergraduate degree and was working on a master’s degree in business administration (MBA) from UGA. In reality, Arbab did not receive an undergraduate degree from UGA until May 2019, which was in cellular biology and genetics. He has never been enrolled in UGA’s MBA program.

In text messages and emails to investors and potential investors, Arbab made multiple representations about the Fund, such as that his “firm” was “different because we target young investors/college kids” and that money invested in the Fund was “GUARANTEED and backed up to 15,000$”. Contrary to Arbab’s claims, the Fund never existed, and, upon information and belief, there is no brokerage account existing in the name of the Fund, APCI, or APCM.

Earlier in June, the SEC managed to obtain an Order for Preliminary Injunction and Other Equitable Relief. The Court ordered, inter alia, that the assets of Arbab, APCI and APCM are frozen. The freeze shall include but not be limited to those funds located in any bank accounts of the defendants. In addition, proceeds derived from the securities offerings alleged in the Commission’s complaint remaining in the custody or control of any defendant are hereby frozen regardless of where said proceeds are located.

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