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Authorities Raid 2 Futures Trading Firms

March 03, 1994|TOM PETRUNO

The California Department of Corporations and the federal Commodity Futures Trading Commission on Wednesday jointly raided two businesses alleged to be selling gold, silver and currency futures without proper registration.

The targets, Lida International Financial Data in San Gabriel and Worth Financial Data in San Francisco, were barred from doing business under a state administrative action, pending a federal court hearing.

The agencies allege that Lida and Worth, both owned by Topworth International of Hong Kong, sold futures primarily to Asian residents of California but failed to register their brokers with the CFTC. Officials also alleged that the futures, if they existed, were not traded on regulated exchanges.

"We believe it's possible that the trades never took place," a spokeswoman for the corporations department said.

As much as $30 million may have been collected from 5,000 investors by the companies since 1991, the state agency said. It will make a formal announcement of the raids today. Executives at the companies could not be reached.

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