Embattled Amerindo Investment Advisors founder Alberto Vilar, whose sputtering Amerindo Technology Fund was folded into the Munder Internet Fund on July 18, pleaded not guilty late last week to new charges of conspiracy and wire fraud, the Wall Street Journal reports.
Vilar and his partner, Gary Tanaka, are accused of taking $5 million from an investor and using it for personal expenses and to fulfill charity pledges. The money was intended for a new investment initiative separate from the firm's technology fund, which gained great notoriety as it rode the Internet boom to dizzying heights in the late 1990s.
In an ironic twist to the case, Vilar struggled for three weeks after his arrest to raise the necessary cash to post bail. Several of Vilar's professional and philanthropic colleagues came to his aid by pledging more than $1.5 million. Tanaka posted bail immediately. Both men are restricted to their homes in Manhattan and are awaiting their next court dates.
The technology fund transferred its assets and liabilities to the Munder Series Trust of Birmingham, Mich.-based Munder Capital in exchange for shares of the Munder Internet Fund at their respective net asset values. The transfer awaits a number of approvals, but should be completed in October, officials said.
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