White-Collar Crime

Lawyer takes plea in money-laundering case linked to convicted ex-client's Ponzi scheme

A Las Vegas lawyer has pleaded guilty to a felony after admittedly helping a client from Montana conceal the source of $2.3 million used to purchase a company in 2007.

Attorney R. Christopher Reade, 43, pleaded guilty in federal court in Las Vegas on Wednesday to being an accessory after the fact to the laundering of monetary instruments, reports the Las Vegas Review-Journal.

The case against Reade concerns money funneled by then-client Richard Young from his Global One Group, through a holding company created by Reade. The lawyer began representing both Young and Global One in 2007 in business and litigation matters, reports KLAS.

The $2.3 million was used to buy Trend Commodities, a currency exchange broker. Federal prosecutors said the Internet-based Global One, which claimed to be focused on training individuals how to trade on the currency exchange market, actually was a front for a Ponzi scheme operated by Young that defrauded some 1,400 investors out of $16 million between 2006 and 2008, according to the Review-Journal and Courthouse News.

Young was convicted in 2011 by a federal court jury in Reno of multiple charges including wire fraud, securities fraud and money laundering, the Billings Gazette reported at the time. Young, 54, was sentenced to 25 years in late 2011.

Reade could get as much as 10 years when he is sentenced in May.

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