STAMFORD, Conn. — A federal grand jury has indicted a 65-year-old Stamford man on additional federal charges — for a total of 39 — in connection with defrauding investors of over $2 million, prosecutors said Friday.
Thomas J. Connerton was charged with various offenses stemming from the securities fraud scheme that defrauded 50 victim-investors, according to U.S. Attorney John H. Durham.
In September 2015, Connerton even told victim-investors, “I will go on the record to state that there is not a single investor that will lose one dollar invested in Safety Technologies.”
A federal grand jury in New Haven returned the 39-count superseding indictment on Nov. 20.
On March 7, a grand jury returned an indictment charging Connerton with fraud and money laundering offenses stemming from the scheme. The superseding indictment charges him with an additional count of tax evasion.
As alleged in the superseding indictment, Connerton was founder, president, and CEO of Safety Technologies, a company that had its principal place of business at various times in Simsbury, Madison, Westport and Stamford.
Safety Tech was founded in 2006, purportedly for the purpose of developing and commercializing what was represented to be a highly durable puncture and cut resistant material that was to be used in the surgical glove market and other related markets.
Safety Tech has not obtained any patents, and Connerton did not register Safety Tech’s securities with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission.
The indictment alleges that, beginning in June 2009, Connerton induced victim-investors to provide him with funds and to purchase Safety Tech securities by falsely representing that the valuation of Safety Tech was realistically in the tens or hundreds of millions of dollars, that a lucrative deal to sell or license his glove technology was imminent, and that he would use their funds for research and development, product testing, and to bring the product to market.
The indictment alleges that even though he said that the funds they invested would be used to fund research and development, for product testing, for business expenses and for legal fees, Connerton used invested funds to pay personal expenses, including, on two separate occasions, to buy diamond engagement rings from Tiffany & Co. He also used funds to repay loans to an earlier investor.
The indictment further alleges that he engaged in monetary transactions in an attempt to conceal from the FBI and the SEC the nature and source of funds received by Safety Tech from the sale of Safety Tech securities.
Finally, the indictment alleges that Connerton failed to pay $271,375 in federal income taxes between 2004 and 2015.
The indictment charges Connerton with 12 counts of wire fraud, one count of mail fraud and 18 counts of securities fraud. Those offenses carry a maximum term of 20 years in prison on each count.
It also charges him with six counts of money laundering, with a maximum of 10 years in prison on each count; one count of money laundering conspiracy, which has a maximum of 20 years in prison; and one count of tax evasion, an offense that carries a maximum prison term of five years.
Connerton has been detained since his arrest March 9.
His trial is scheduled to begin May 9.
Anyone with information that may be helpful to this ongoing investigation, or who believe they were victimized by this scheme, are asked to contact the FBI at 203-777-6311.
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