Nick Lotito & Seth Kirschenbaum

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SEC goes after Georgia financial advisor for fraud

Fraud is broad crime associated with using deceptive means to obtain something. In many cases, fraud is used to deceive people into giving up property or cash. While the underlying themes are the same, there are actually many different types of fraud. Some types of fraud readers may be familiar with are securities fraud, wire fraud and tax fraud. While each of these acts have similarities, the penalties for the various fraud charges can vary dramatically, depending on a number of factors

The Securities and Exchange Commission recently charged a Georgia financial advisor from Buford with stealing approximately $2 million in client funds. According to a spokesperson for the SEC, the money was taken from the man’s retirement accounts. The Federal District Court Judge hearing the matter granted the SEC a temporary restraining order. The order prevents the man from destroying documents, freezes his assets and expedites the discovery process.

The SEC has accused the Georgia man of defrauding his own clients by claiming that he would invest their money in common stocks, annuities and fixed income assets. Following a federal investigation, the SEC believes that rather than investing the money, the money was siphoned for personal use. The SEC is asking for a return of the money, a permanent injunction and civil penalties.

While a lot of information is still yet to be revealed, one thing that is known is that this man likely faces an uphill legal battle. With so many high-profile fraud cases in the news recently, prospective jurors are especially sensitive to issues involving securities fraud. To win a fraud case it is imperative to defeat these biases. Anyone accused of fraud should take all possible steps to ensure that his or her right to a fair trial is protected.

Source: Financial Advisor, “Georgia Financial Advisor Charged With $2 Million Fraud,” May 24, 2013

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Nick Lotito & Seth Kirschenbaum

Former Federal Prosecutors

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