Monday, October 19, 2009

American Spectator: The Lost Art of Due Diligence

Nice read from the American Spectator:

The Lost Art of Due Diligence

"Unfortunately, investors sometimes have to dig really deep to find those connections that might cause them to reconsider writing a check," cautions Frank Bragg of Centurion Intelligence Partners. Bragg runs a due diligence firm that scours the one-off partnerships and the less-than-arms-length relationships that had been overlooked in years past. "Today, it's an absolute necessity to turn over every single rock," he warns.

Bragg's warning has merit. Another firm that has fallen under a cloud of suspicion is one whose owners have both impeccable family pedigree and the best of political connections. A federal judge recently froze the assets of hedge fund Ponta Negra Fund I, LLC after hearing claims from the SEC that the firm committed a multi-million dollar fraud by forging documents, falsifying returns and misrepresenting assets under management.

The SEC's action against Ponta Negra is not the newsworthy event. It is the fund's curious relationship with Paradigm Global Advisors, LLC. A fund of hedge funds, Paradigm is owned and managed by James and Hunter Biden, brother and son of Vice President Joe Biden.

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