Articles Posted in Colorado

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Investment fraud lawyers are currently investigating claims on behalf of elderly seniors who have been the victim of affinity fraud or other investment scams. Affinity fraud is an investment scam that targets an identifiable group such as seniors, ethnic communities, professional groups, religions groups, etc. In one recent claim, Gary C. Snisky reportedly targeted and defrauded more than 40 seniors in a scam that cost these individuals $3.8 million. According to the allegations, Snisky mostly targeted retired annuity holders, many of whom lived in Colorado.

Elderly Seniors Targeted for Financial Fraud

The charges were filed by the Securities and Exchange Commission and claim that Snisky used insurance agents to sell Arete LLC interests, which he claimed were safer and more profitable than annuities. Furthermore, the SEC’s claims allege that Snisky told investors that their funds would be used to purchase government-backed agency bonds at a discount by eliminating middlemen fees, which would then be used for overnight banking sweeps. However, he allegedly misappropriated around $2.8 million, using these funds to pay commissions and mortgage payments. According to securities arbitration lawyers, scams like this are far too common and, unfortunately, many investors are either unaware or too embarrassed to come forward.

Reportedly, Snisky described Arete LLC as an “annuity plus” with up to 7 percent in guaranteed annual returns. Furthermore, he allegedly claimed that investors could earn interest and take principal from the investment without penalty, even after 10 years. According to the SEC’s allegations, Snisky stated that the investments were safe, exhibited falsified investor account statements that showed earnings to staff and drafted documents to be used as offering materials by salespeople.

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Securities fraud attorneys are currently investigating claims on behalf of former clients of Northwestern Mutual Investment Services LLC, MML Investors Services LLC, Wealth By Design Inc. and Clinton D. Fraley. In August, an emergency law enforcement action was filed by the Colorado Securities Commissioner to enjoin Wealth by Design and Clinton Fraley from violating the Colorado Securities Act. According to the allegations, Fraley violated the Colorado Securities Act by accessing investors’ mutual fund accounts without authorization, converting their securities into cash illegally and forging checks in order to access funds for personal use.

Victims of Clinton D. Fraley Could Recover Losses

“Fraley, who was a licensed securities professional employed with licensed broker-dealers until he was terminated in 2011, solicited hundreds of thousands of dollars from Colorado investors, promising the investors that their money would be invested in ‘a well-balanced portfolio of investments’ consisting of Roth IRAs, traditional investments such as stocks and bonds, mutual funds and non-qualified investments,” says the statement from Colorado enforcement officials. However, “Fraley gained unauthorized access to the investors’ accounts, forged the investors’ signatures on checks, deposited the money in a Wealth bank account and converted the money for his own personal benefit, including the purchase of a house.”

Stock fraud lawyers say Fraley was registered from March 2007 to May 2011 with Northwestern Mutual Investment Services, a FINRA-registered broker-dealer. Fraley was registered with another FINRA-registered broker-dealer, MML Investors Services, from May 2011 to October 2011. All FINRA-registered broker dealers are, according to securities fraud attorneys, required to properly supervise the activities of their brokers during the time in which they are registered with the firm. As a result, these firms may be held liable for failing to adequately supervise Fraley.

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Stock fraud lawyers are currently investigating claims on behalf of investors who suffered losses as a result of their investment in Dividend Capital Total Realty Trust Inc. Dividend Capital Total Realty Trust was formed on April 11, 2005 and is a Maryland corporation, according to its filing with the Securities and Exchange Commission. Dividend Capital is located in Denver, Colorado and was designed to invest in a diverse portfolio of real estate-related and real property investments. The targeted investments of the company include direct investments that consist of high-quality retail, industrial, multi-family and other properties. The properties are primarily located in North America. The company also targets securities investments that include mortgage loans which are secured by income-producing real estate, and those issued by other real estate companies.

Dividend Capital Total Realty Trust Non-traded REIT Investors Could Recover Losses

Securities arbitration lawyers believe that secondary market offers indicate that Dividend Capital Total Realty Trust’s value has appeared to have substantially declined.

Non-traded REIT investments like the Dividend Capital Total Realty Trust typically offer commissions between 7-10 percent, which is significantly higher than traditional investments like mutual funds and stocks. In some cases, the commission generated by these investments can be as high as 15 percent. This higher commission can explain why brokerage firms are motivated to recommend these investments despite their possible unsuitability.

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Investment attorneys turn their eyes to Bank of America once again, only two months into the New Year. Bank of America Corp. has been subpoenaed by William Gavin, the Massachusetts securities regulator, over LCM VII Ltd. and Bryn Mawr CLO II Ltd., two related collateralized loan obligations. These two CLOs led to investor losses totaling $150 million. The subpoena will, hopefully, help authorities in determining if Bank of America knew it was overvaluing the assets of the portfolios. Both Bryn Mawr and LCM were sold in 2007, prior to the 2008 merger between Bank of America Securities and Merrill Lynch.

News: Bank of America Faces More Allegations In 2012

Bank of America held commercial loans from small banks amounting to around $400 million in 2006. In 2007, securities packages were put together from these loans and then sold to investors. The subpoena arrives only one day after Bank of America, JP Morgan Chase & Co., Wells Fargo & Co., Citigroup Inc. and Ally Financial Inc. settled allegations of engaging in abusive mortgage practices. These abusive practices included engaging in deceptive practices in the offering of loan modifications, a failure to offer other options before closing on borrowers with federally insured mortgages, submitting improper documents to the bankruptcy court and robo-signing foreclosure documents without proper review of the paperwork.

The settlement amounted to $25 billion and involved federal agencies plus authorities in 49 states. This settlement is designed to give $2,000 to around 750 borrowers whose homes were foreclosed upon after the home values dropped 33 percent from their 2006 worth, and to provide mortgage relief. In addition, all five banks will pay $766.5 million in penalties to the Federal Reserve. This is considered to be the biggest federal-state settlement ever. Bank of America will also pay $1 billion to settle allegations that it, together with its Countrywide Financial unit, engaged in fraudulent and wrongful conduct.

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