Newport man charged with fraud

A Newport Coast man with a record of securities violations has been charged again, this time with allegedly defrauding investors out of millions of dollars, according to federal regulators.

Larry R. Crowder, 53, was charged Wednesday by the Securities and Exchange Commission with allegedly lying to investors about $11 million in investments supposedly headed for a green energy company.

The federal complaint names Crowder and Joseph R. Porche, 51, of Aliso Viejo, as the leaders of an investment scheme that duped about 200 investors. Authorities said the two led Kensington Resources Inc., which told clients that their money would be invested in American Environmental Energy Inc.

The men allegedly told investors that their salesmen and sales managers received only a 10% commission off the money raised, when it was actually 25%, officials said.

Attempts to reach the defendants' attorneys were unsuccessful Thursday.

Prosecutors claim Crowder and Porche, along with four other men, told investors $8.8 million, or 80%, of their money was going into American Environmental Energy stock, according to court documents.

The group only invested $315,000, or less than 3% of the money they received, prosecutors said.

The rest, according to the government, went to fund what was described as Crowder's and Porche's glitzy lifestyles.

Crowder has a previous violation with the SEC for similar charges and was prohibited from dealing with stock brokers or dealers. He's charged with violating that requirement too.

Details on their next court appearance were not immediately available.

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