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SEC alleges Denver-based mini-Madoff bought Rembrandts in Ponzi scheme

The Securities and Exchange Commission sought to freeze the assets of Shawn Merriman and his Market Street Advisors firm Wednesday, alleging the Denver-based money manager bilked investors of as much as $20 million to finance his "lavish lifestyle," Bloomberg reports. The lawsuit, filed by federal regulators in U.S. District Court in Denver, alleges Merriman operated a Ponzi scheme for 15 years and spent proceeds on "his own personal purchases of classic cars, motorcycles, motor homes, a cabin in Idaho, and fine art collections, including works by Rembrandt that are worth millions of dollars."