The Commodity Futures Trading Commission sued Wesley Brown, Edward Rubin and Maverick International, Inc. in a federal court in Florida for committing fraud, claiming that the respondents solicited persons to participate in a pooled investment vehicle to trade futures contracts, but instead, took their money for personal use. The CFTC also claimed that Maverick—which operated as a commodity pool operator—and the two individuals—who acted as associated persons—were never properly registered with the Commission. According to the Commission, Mr. Brown used his position as an associate pastor to solicit funds from congregants in his Florida church. After respondents used the funds for their personal use, they falsely told the investors that their money had been lost in the collapse of Peregrine Financial Group when in fact it had been stolen, claimed the CFTC. The CFTC alleged that 31 persons invested US $2 million in the illegal scheme. PFG was a futures commission merchant registered with the CFTC until July 2012 when it filed bankruptcy following the revelation that Russell Wasendorf, Sr., its principal owner and chief executive officer, had committed fraud by using customer funds for his own purposes.