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Lessons from McLeod - Investment Adviser Sells Nonexistent Bond Funds

Let’s be honest. We are all susceptible to the Any-Friend-of-Bob’s Syndrome. It led many good investigators to loose their nest eggs in this case. As you read this it is leading thousands of people to put their life savings into the hands of someone who intends to steal it.

Most of Kenneth Wayne McLeod’s (McLeod) clients were active or retired federal employees, many of them former agents for the DEA or other law enforcement agencies.  McLeod helped them select the asset allocation their government retirement plan, and then offered to invest additional amounts in supposed government bond funds he called the FEBG Bond Fund and the FEBG Special Fund, named for McLeod’s consulting firm Federal Employee Benefits Group, Inc. (FEBG) .  In the wake of McLeod’s suicide last week, investigators have learned that the FEBG funds were nothing more than Ponzi schemes. (more…)

You Are On The List

Britain’s Financial Services Authority (“FSA”) has exposed a reality that few appreciate: scam artists know your name. According to a press release from the FSA: The Financial Services Authority (FSA) and City of London Police (CoLP) have contacted 1,000 people across the UK to warn them that their personal details are on a ‘master list’ being used by fraudsters to target and sell them worthless shares.

Britain’s Financial Services Authority (“FSA”) has exposed a reality that few appreciate: scam artists know your name.  According to a press release from the FSA: (more…)

SEC Charges Husband and Wife with $3.5 Million Securities Fraud

According to the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission (“SEC”), Kathleen S. Dobens and her husband Charles T. Dobens ran an investment fraud from their home in Duxbury, Massachusetts.  The SEC claims that the Dobens, operating through four entities, Silex Group, LLC, Preakness Apartments I & II, LLC, Cherry Hills Apartments of Fort Worth, LLC, and [...]

According to the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission (“SEC”), Kathleen S. Dobens and her husband Charles T. Dobens ran an investment fraud from their home in Duxbury, Massachusetts.  The SEC claims that the Dobens, operating through four entities, Silex Group, LLC, Preakness Apartments I & II, LLC, Cherry Hills Apartments of Fort Worth, LLC, and Clear River Partners, LLC, raising approximately $3.5 million from 60 investors by guaranteeing investors returns of between nine and 12 percent annually.  According to the SEC, the defendants told investors that the profits would come from the development of multi-family housing.  The SEC’s press release on this case reads, in part, as follows:   (more…)

SEC Shuts Down Alleged Ponzi Operating Through Estate Planning Seminars

Would you spend your entire nest egg on a lunch? If you attend an estate planning seminar or a wealth management seminar offering a free meal in exchange for your attention, you may wind up doing just that.

Would you spend your entire nest egg on a lunch?  If you attend an estate planning seminar or a wealth management seminar offering a free meal in exchange for your attention, you may wind up doing just that.  This week, the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission charged two men with making that trade with investors.  The SEC obtained an emergency injunction shutting down USA Retirement Management Services operated by Francois E. Durmaz and Robert C. Pribilski, neither of whom holds any kind of license from the SEC. According to the SEC’s complaint: (more…)

British Case Shows the Multi-National Nature of Financial Fraud

British Case Shows the Multi-National Nature of Financial Fraud

Britain’s Serious Fraud Office has announced the sentencing of Robert Allan Scott of Newmarket, England on charges that he cooperated in the sale of worthless securities by a boiler room operation based out of Spain.  According to the SFO: (more…)

SEC Charges Two Sacramento Men with Stealing $10 Million

SEC Charges Two Sacramento Men with Stealing $10 Million

According to the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission, Lawrence “Lee” Loomis and his father-in-law John Hagener defrauded 100 investors out of $10 million by soliciting investments in supposed loans to homebuyers to be secured by real estate deeds of trust. According to the SEC, the defendants told prospective investors that the investments would be put into safe “liquid high-yield accounts” earning 12 percent and that the investments were guaranteed by a third party. (more…)

The Wrong Kind of Help

This time last year four people (three men and a woman), clad in bullet proof vests, wearing ear-pieces, and sporting at least one stun gun walked into the Folsom, California offices of Equity Investment, Management and Trading Inc.,  operated by accused Ponzi artist Anthony Vassallo, and said that they worked for the FBI and the Securities and [...]

This time last year four people (three men and a woman), clad in bullet proof vests, wearing ear-pieces, and sporting at least one stun gun walked into the Folsom, California offices of Equity Investment, Management and Trading Inc.,  operated by accused Ponzi artist Anthony Vassallo, and said that they worked for the FBI and the Securities and Exchange Commission.  They demanded that Vassallo wire more than $300,000 to a specified bank account.  Vassallo wired no money.  Likely, there was no money left.  As it turns out, the four were trying to recover the investments of four victims of the alleged Ponzi scheme.   (more…)

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