Connerton was the founder, president and CEO of Safety Technologies LLC, which was purportedly created in 2006 to develop and commercialize puncture- and cut-resistant material for surgical gloves. Safety Technologies moved its principal location several times, including Stamford and Westport, but it never obtained patents for its alleged product and was not registered with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC). Nonetheless, Connerton began enticing investors in 2009 to finance his operation, including women he met through an online dating site. Connerton used the investors’ funds on personal expenses, including the purchase of diamond engagement rings from Tiffany & Co., and not for the research and development purposes that he told his investors. An investigation found that Connerton attempted to conceal his activities from the FBI and the SEC and failed to pay approximately $293,000 in federal income taxes between 2014 and 2015.
The jury in the federal court found Connerton guilty of 12 counts of wire fraud, one count of mail fraud and 16 counts of securities fraud, offenses that carry a maximum term of imprisonment of 20 years on each count. He also was found guilty of four counts of money laundering, an offense that carries a maximum term of imprisonment of 10 years on each count, and one count of tax evasion, an offense that carries a maximum term of imprisonment of five years.
The government is seeking full restitution for the victim-investors and forfeiture of the two engagement rings, along with more than $490,000 in back taxes, interest and penalties. A sentencing date is not scheduled.