Florida couple ordered to pay $3M in metals fraud case


FORT LAUDERDALE, Fla. (AP) – A South Florida couple has been ordered to pay nearly $3 million in penalties and restitution for operating a fraudulent precious metals business.

A federal judge issued the order recently against Cindy and Paul Vandivier of Coconut Creek, Florida. They operated a company called Mintline that solicited customers across the U.S. to invest in precious metals from July 2011 to April 2013.

The Commodity Futures Trading Commission says instead of doing a legitimate metals investment business, the Vandiviers diverted nearly $1 million in customer money for their own personal expenses.

The judge’s order requires the Vandiviers to pay a combined $2 million in civil penalties and nearly $1 million in restitution to customers. The CFTC says it’s not clear whether they have the money to repay customers.

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