While stock broker fraud is always a despicable crime to the victims of the fraud, the case of Joshua Gould's broker misconduct seems infinitely worse for the close relationship between victim and perpetrator, as well as the vulnerable nature of other investors. Gould, a former independent broker for Woodbury Financial Services in University City, defrauded friends, family, and investors, including the elderly, widows, and religious organizations.
Not even Gould's own mother was safe, and she lost around $500,000 to her son, the bulk of her inheritance. All in all, more than 25 people were swindled out of more than $5 million. Gould spent some of the money on charitable donations to boost his reputation while at the same time spending it on strippers and entertaining them at St. Louis hotel parties. In addition, he paid the rent of at least one stripper. Gould also paid off personal debt, renovated his home, started several businesses, and facilitated a ponzi scheme.
Once the theft was discovered, Gould confessed and, according to his lawyer, has cooperated and attempted to remedy the losses of his victims. During his trial, he expressed remorse for his actions and disdain for himself.
During proceedings, there was no shortage of touching victim testimony. One victim lost the last $7,000 of her husband's death settlement while another widow wrote of the loss of her savings, some of which was the last money her husband earned while battling cancer.
Of the 97 to 121 months in prison Gould was facing, he received only the minimum sentence. According to Assistant U.S. Attorney Hal Goldsmith, Gould has currently only repaid between $40,000 and $50,000. However, he has now been ordered to pay $3.1 million on his own and another $1.2 million together with David Rubin of Chesterfield with whom he defrauded one man. Gould and Rubin both pleaded guilty on April 29. Rubin has not yet been sentenced.