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Ohio Northern University Endowment Seeks to Recoup Funds after SEC Reveals Investment Fraud

Mar 18, 2009

The Ohio Northern University Endowment is seeking to recoup $10 million after the University learned its funds were part of an investment fraud run by two East Coast partners who owned and operated Westridge Capital Management, Inc.

The U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission charged Stephen Walsh and Paul Greenwood, owners of Westridge, with misappropriation of $553 million of investor's assets on Feb. 25. The SEC alleges that the pair solicited a number of institutional investors, including educational institutions and public pensions and retirement plans, by promising to invest their money in an "enhanced equity index" strategy.

ONU President Dr. Kendall L. Baker said, "The University is diligently working with its investment advisors and attorneys to rectify this unfortunate situation and recover the money that was lost in the fraudulent investment."

On May 15, 2007, ONU agreed to invest $10 million from its endowment with Westridge. In February 2009, the University learned of the government's allegations against Westridge and sought full redemption of its investment.

"It is too early to know if we can get back any portion of the lost investment, but we are confident our attorneys will aggressively pursue the matter," Baker said. "This loss will not affect the University in any immediate way. We will continue to be able to meet our obligations."

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