Tag Archives: ponzi scheme

Hector May-Former Securities America Broker-Investigation Over Missing Client Funds-New City, NY

May 2018-New City, New York

Local press is reporting that Rockland/Orange County businessman and former Securities America stockbroker Hector May is being investigated by federal prosecutors on allegations of stealing money from his clients. May has operated Executive Compensation Planners in New City, NY since the mid 1980’s.

According to  FINRA records   May currently has one customer claim pending that alleges misappropriation of funds and there is a disclosure that the U.S. Department of Justice is conducting an official criminal investigation of May’s potential involvement in a suspected felony.

The Financial Industry Regulatory Authority (FINRA) is the agency that licenses and regulates stockbrokers and brokerage firms. FINRA requires brokers and brokerage firms to report customer complaints and disputes as well as regulatory sanctions. In addition brokers are required to disclose certain financial matters such as personal bankruptcies, judgments and liens.

May is a prominent member of the local business community and received the Rockland Business Association’s Pinnacle Award two years ago. Press reports suggest that the missing millions could be the result of a Ponzi scheme.

In a Ponzi scheme the perpetrator of the fraud uses some of the money from the new victims, who think the funds are being invested, to pay fake returns to the earlier investors. The balance of the new funds are used by the perpetrator of the fraud for personal expenses.

Hector May was a registered representative of Securities America from 8/1998 until March 2018 when he was fired. Securities America indicated the reason for the discharge was: “Misappropriation of client assets”.

If you have an account with Hector May and have questions about how it has been handled or believe you are a victim of fraud,  call for a no charge consultation with an experienced securities attorney to learn how you may be able to recover damages from May’s employer, Securities America.

Rex Securities Law , with offices in Boca Raton, FL,  and  Austin, TX,   provides representation to  investors  nationwide who are seeking recovery of investment losses due to the negligence or fraud of stockbrokers and broker dealers. If you have questions about how your account has been handled, call to speak with an experienced securities attorney.

Most cases handled on a contingent fee basis meaning that you do not pay legal fees unless we are successful.

Nationwide Representation

Rex Securities Law

TollFree: 877-224-3199

Florida-561 391 1900 

Texas-512-329-2870

Clifton Stanley, Michael Watts, The Lifepay Group- Targeted in SEC Fraud Suit-Houston, TX

April 2018-Houston, Texas

The Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) charged the following individuals and their companies with operating a $2.4 million Ponzi scheme targeting elderly retirees:

  • Clifton E. Stanley of Galveston, TX
  • Michael Watts of Sugar Land, TX
  • The Lifepay Group of Missouri, TX
  • SMDRE LLC of Sugar Land, TX

According to the SEC complaint, from 2010-2017 they used a collection of misrepresentations and phony promises  of outsized investment returns to convince these elderly victims to invest their retirement funds. Investors were promised returns of up to 36% per year.

Stanley is alleged to have used $1.3 million for personal expenses, including country club memberships, living and entertainment expenses.

Link to SEC complaint

If you were referred to invest in this scheme by a registered stockbroker you may be able to recover your losses from the broker’s employer. Call for a no charge consultation to learn about your options.

Rex Securities Law , with offices in Boca Raton, FL,  and  Austin, TX,   provides representation to  investors  nationwide who are seeking recovery of investment losses due to the negligence or fraud of stockbrokers and broker dealers. If you have questions about how your account has been handled, call to speak with an experienced securities attorney.

Most cases handled on a contingent fee basis meaning that you do not pay legal fees unless we are successful.

Nationwide Representation

Rex Securities Law

TollFree: 877-224-3199

Florida-561 391 1900 

Jerry Raines -Former Signal Securities Broker-Customers Sue For $4M Losses on Woodbridge Funds-Kilgore,TX

May 2018- Kilgore, TX

The FINRA records of  Jerry D. Raines,  a  previously registered stock broker who was last employed by HD Vest Investment Services and Signal Securities,  disclose  eleven  pending customer disputes involving the allegedly fraudulent Woodbridge Mortgage Investment Funds. Raines operates Stonelion Insurance and Financial Services in Kilgore, TX.

Total damages alleged in the pending cases exceed $4 million. Claimants have alleged unsuitable recommendations, misrepresentation and that Raines participated in a civil conspiracy and committed overt acts to support  the Woodbridge fraudulent scheme.

The Financial Industry Regulatory Authority (FINRA) is the agency that licenses and regulates stockbrokers and brokerage firms. FINRA requires brokers and brokerage firms to report customer complaints and disputes as well as regulatory sanctions. In addition brokers are required to disclose certain financial matters such as personal bankruptcies, judgments and liens.

 

Woodbridge-A $1.2 billion Ponzi According to SEC

The U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission announced charges and an asset freeze against a group of unregistered funds and their owner who allegedly bilked thousands of retail investors, many of them seniors, in a $1.2 billion Ponzi scheme.

According to the SEC’s complaint, unsealed in federal court in Miami, Florida, Robert H. Shapiro and a group of unregistered investment companies called the Woodbridge Group of Companies LLC, formerly headquartered in Boca Raton, Florida, defrauded more than 8,400 investors in unregistered Woodbridge funds.

“We allege that through aggressive tactics, Woodbridge and Shapiro swindled seniors into a business model built on lies, which the SEC’s Miami Regional Office staff moved to halt,” said Stephanie Avakian, Co-Director of the SEC’s Enforcement Division.

“Our complaint alleges that Woodbridge’s business model was a sham,” said Steven Peikin, Co-Director of the SEC’s Enforcement Division. “The only way Woodbridge was able to pay investors their dividends and interest payments was through the constant infusion of new investor money.”

“Our complaint further alleges that Shapiro used a web of layered companies to conceal his ownership interest in the purported third-party borrowers,” said Eric I. Bustillo, Director of the SEC’s Miami Regional Office.  “Shapiro used the scheme to line his pockets with millions of investor dollars.”

Raines was employed by HD Vest Investment Services  from 8/2014-5/2017.  Prior to that  he was with Signal Securities, Inc.  from 4/2013-6/2014 and before that with Woodmen Financial Services.

If you have losses in an account handled by Jerry Raines, call for a no charge consultation to learn about your options for recovery of damages.

Rex Securities Law , with offices in Boca Raton, FL,  and  Austin, TX,   provides representation to  investors  nationwide who are seeking recovery of investment losses due to the negligence or fraud of stockbrokers and broker dealers. If you have questions about how your account has been handled, call to speak with an experienced securities attorney.

Most cases handled on a contingent fee basis meaning that you do not pay legal fees unless we are successful.

Nationwide Representation

Rex Securities Law

TollFree: 877-224-3199

Florida-561 391 1900 

Texas-512-329-2870

Donna Barnard-Former Signal Securities Broker-Subject of $4M Woodbridge Fund Suits-Kilgore, TX

May 2018- Kilgore, TX

The FINRA records of  Donna L. Barnard ,  a  stock broker formerly employed by HD Vest Investment Services and Signal Securities,  disclose  10  pending customer disputes involving the allegedly fraudulent Woodbridge Mortgage Investment Funds I and II. Barnard is affiliated with Stonelion Insurance & Financial Services in Kilgore, Texas.

Total damages alleged in the ten claims are nearly $4 million. The former customers of H.D. Vest and Signal Securities who are bringing the claims allege unsuitable investments, misrepresentation, failure to perform adequate due diligence and the  sale of unregistered securities

The Financial Industry Regulatory Authority (FINRA) is the agency that licenses and regulates stockbrokers and brokerage firms. FINRA requires brokers and brokerage firms to report customer complaints and disputes as well as regulatory sanctions. In addition brokers are required to disclose certain financial matters such as personal bankruptcies, judgments and liens.

Woodbridge-A $1.2 billion Ponzi According to SEC

The U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission announced charges and an asset freeze against a group of unregistered funds and their owner who allegedly bilked thousands of retail investors, many of them seniors, in a $1.2 billion Ponzi scheme.

According to the SEC’s complaint, recently unsealed in federal court in Miami, Florida, Robert H. Shapiro and a group of unregistered investment companies called the Woodbridge Group of Companies LLC formerly headquartered in Boca Raton, Florida, defrauded more than 8,400 investors in the  unregistered Woodbridge funds.

“We allege that through aggressive tactics, Woodbridge and Shapiro swindled seniors into a business model built on lies, which the SEC’s Miami Regional Office staff moved to halt,” said Stephanie Avakian, Co-Director of the SEC’s Enforcement Division.

“Our complaint alleges that Woodbridge’s business model was a sham,” said Steven Peikin, Co-Director of the SEC’s Enforcement Division. “The only way Woodbridge was able to pay investors their dividends and interest payments was through the constant infusion of new investor money.”

“Our complaint further alleges that Shapiro used a web of layered companies to conceal his ownership interest in the purported third-party borrowers,” said Eric I. Bustillo, Director of the SEC’s Miami Regional Office.  “Shapiro used the scheme to line his pockets with millions of investor dollars.”

Barnard , who is not currently registered as a broker, was employed by HD Vest Investment Services  from 8/2014-5/2017.  Prior to that  she was with Signal Securities, Inc.  from April 2013 until June 2014.

If you have losses in an account handled by Donna Barnard,  call for a no charge consultation to learn about your options for recovery of your losses.

Rex Securities Law , with offices in Boca Raton, FL,  and  Austin, TX,   provides representation to  investors  nationwide who are seeking recovery of investment losses due to the negligence or fraud of stockbrokers and broker dealers. If you have questions about how your account has been handled, call to speak with an experienced securities attorney.

Most cases handled on a contingent fee basis meaning that you do not pay legal fees unless we are successful.

Nationwide Representation

Rex Securities Law

TollFree: 877-224-3199

Florida-561 391 1900 

Texas-512-329-2870

Stephen Hatch-Texas Real Estate Investor Sentenced to Five Years on Ponzi Scheme Targeting Christians

The Arizona Republic reports that Texan Stephen J. Hatch, 68, pleaded guilty to felony fraud and was sentenced to five years for operating a $70 million Ponzi scheme that targeted Christians who were promised double digit returns on real estate investments.

According to the press release, Hatch solicited investments in partnerships named after biblical verses and sent emails containing biblical quotes to his investor victims. Hatch told investors he was already a wealthy man and that he didn’t need the money but rather was trying to help them make money in the name of God.

Rather than use the victim’s money to invest in real estate as represented, Hatch used it for extravagant salaries for his children and friends, an investment in a restaurant, luxury items for himself, including a California ranch.

AFFINITY FRAUD

This type of fraud is known as ‘affinity fraud’Affinity fraud refers to investment scams that prey upon members of identifiable groups, such as religious or ethnic communities, the elderly, or professional groups. See this for more information about affinity fraud. 

Rex Securities Law , with offices in Boca Raton, FL,  and  Austin, TX,   provides representation to  investors  nationwide who are seeking recovery of investment losses due to the negligence or fraud of stockbrokers and broker dealers. If you have questions about how your account has been handled, call to speak with an experienced securities attorney.

Most cases handled on a contingent fee basis meaning that you do not pay legal fees unless we are successful.

Nationwide Representation

Rex Securities Law

TollFree: 877-224-3199

Florida-561 391 1900 

Texas-512-329-2870