Metals.com Accused of Selling Fraudulently Overpriced Gold and Silver Bullion

Image of Gold BarsMetals.com and its parent company, TMTE, Inc., along with Chase Metals, LLC, Chase Metals, Inc., Barrick Capital, Inc., and its principals Lucas Asher (aka Lucas Thomas Erb, aka Luke Asher) and Simon Batashvili are alleged to have run a nationwide fraud that brought in more than $185 million in money from customers to buy fraudulently overpriced gold and silver bullion. The Commodity Futures Trading Commission (CFTC), along with 30 state regulators who are members of the North American Securities Administrators Association (NASAA), filed an enforcement action against these entities and individuals in federal court.

On September 22, 2020, a federal judge entered a restraining order freezing the defendants’ assets. The federal judge appointed a receiver to take control of Metals.com, Barrick, and a relief defendant named Tower Equity, LLC.

According to the CFTC, the enforcement action against Metals.com and the other defendants is the largest joint filing with state regulators in the history of the CFTC. The CFTC alleges that for at least the past three years, the defendants fraudulently solicited over $185 million in money from customers. More than $140 million was retirement savings. The defendants targeted elderly people, deceiving them and others into purchasing precious metals bullion at inflated prices that were unrelated to prices on the open market. The CFTC alleges that the overcharges were as high as 300 percent over the market price. An announcement from the CFTC about the lawsuit is available here.


This blog is intended to provide information to the general public and to practitioners about developments that may impact Oregon Investments.

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Cody Berne

Cody Berne is an attorney at Stoll Berne in Portland. Cody’s practice focuses on representing investors who lost money because of fraud and other misconduct, class actions, and business litigation. He is a member of the Public Investors Advocate Bar Association and the Oregon Trial Lawyers Association.

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The information contained in this blog does not constitute legal advice, and does not create an attorney-client relationship. We make no claims, promises or guarantees about the accuracy, completeness, or adequacy of the information contained in or linked to this blog.