Former cop from Bellerose indicted for conspiracy to commit wire fraud, swindling investors out of millions: Feds

A former NYPD police officer from Bellerose was charged in an indictment unsealed in Brooklyn federal court for swindling investors out of millions that he used for luxury car rentals and travel, according to federal prosecutors. QNS/File

A former city cop from Bellerose was arrested by federal agents on Wednesday and indicted for conspiracy to commit wire fraud for allegedly swindling investors out of nearly $5 million they put into the foreign exchange-focused investment fund he founded in 2020.

Jason Rodriguez, 37, was named in an indictment unsealed in Brooklyn federal court for allegedly promising investors in his forex-focused fund that there would be a “loss reserve account” that could be used to repay investors if the company lost money trading. Rodriguez, the Chief Operating Officer of Technical Trading Team, LLC, also promised investors that he would never risk more than 1% of assets under management on any single trade and would not hold positions open overnight, according to the indictment.

Each of his promises was meant to assure investors that their investment would be safe but Rodriguez and his company broke all of the promises to his investors, and as he lost more and more money in the forex markets, he used new investor money to pay older investors promised investment returns.

“As alleged, the victims trusted Rodriguez with millions of dollars for what they were assured would be safe investments, supported by the defendant’s claim that he had quit the NYPD because he had become so successful at trading, which was untrue,” U.S. Attorney Breon Peace said. “Roidriguez also falsely promised the victims that their investments would be safe because there would be guardrails over his trading activity to limit risks.”

To date, of the approximately $4.8 million in investor funds wired to accounts controlled by Rodriguez between April 2020 and September 2022, approximately $3.5 million has never been paid back to investigators, according to the indictment.

“In reality, Rodriguez ignored those guardrails and lost millions in investor funds and also misappropriated hundreds of thousands of dollars which he used to pay for luxury car rentals, travel and other personal expenses,” Peace said.

Prior to founding Technical Trading Team, Rodriguez served as an NYPD officer for nearly seven years. 

The Technical Trading Team presentation similarly represented Rodriguez’s “zealous ambition for trading stock took precedence resulting in the end of his law enforcement career…” Rodriguez failed to disclose that he resigned from the NYPD after pleading guilty to a misdemeanor crime and incurring a number of disciplinary infractions, according to the indictment.

“Jason Rodriguez falsely represented his time as an NYPD officer to earn the trust of prospective investors, to whom he then made alleged false promises that cost his victims millions of dollars,” FBI Assistant Director-in-Charge James Smith said. “He withheld the reality of his failed trades and used the investment funds on his personal desires. The FBI will hold accountable anyone who manipulates others, especially for financial gain in the criminal justice system.”

If convicted, Rodriguez faces up to 20 years imprisonment.