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Fund manager arrested in Italy over U.S. fraud charges

LOS ANGELES U.S. authorities in California say a fugitive German hedge fund manager has been arrested in Italy for allegedly orchestrating a stock manipulation scheme that led to at least $200 million in losses to investors across the world.

Federal prosecutors said in a statement on Friday that 53-year-old Florian Wilhelm Jurgen Homm was arrested Friday at the Uffizi Gallery in Florence. Homm has been charged in Los Angeles with four counts, including conspiracy to commit wire fraud and conspiracy to commit securities fraud.

Homm founded a company that managed nine hedge funds. Authorities say he directed the hedge funds to buy billions of shares of penny stocks and the funds traded them among themselves.

Prosecutors say Homm eventually dumped millions of dollars worth of his own shares, which caused at least $200 million in losses to investors.

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