Denver financial advisor swindles 1.7MIL from teachers

So I saw this earlier last month StumblingUpon news articles and thought it interesting because it not only shows that some financial advisors will go to any lengths to get your money, but it just gives a bad name to them in general. Granted, I haven’t found one yet that I trust (aside from maybe Ciaran, but I only read his blog, I don’t have anything invested with him, but I trust his opinion) so maybe they are more like 1 in a million.  Anyway, the article goes on to say:

“A Longmont investment adviser has pleaded guilty to swindling dozens of teachers in 11 Colorado school districts.

Gordon Robert Moore pleaded guilty for his role in an investment scam involving 141 public-school teachers, Colorado Attorney General John Suthers said today.

Moore illegally transferred nearly $1.7 million from accounts with the Public Employees Retirement Association into accounts he controlled, Suthers said.

Moore pleaded guilty to felony theft, felony computer crime and felony securities fraud. He will be sentenced Feb. 26.

Moore was formerly employed by AXA Equitable as an investment adviser.”

How screwed is AXA Equitable?  That’s got to be a dog to get out of.  I know there are probably bad eggs in every basket, and that’s what they’ll play off, but as if Life Insurance hasn’t gotten a bad enough rap, this doesn’t help them.

The article continues:

“Investigators said that in that capacity, Moore contacted public-school teachers from districts across Colorado and asked them to move funds from their 401(k) accounts with PERA into different accounts with AXA.

Suthers said that because retirement funds cannot be transferred for currently employed teachers, Moore would submit forged documents to PERA indicating that the teachers had been terminated.”

How are there not tighter controls on these issues in the first place?  Wouldn’t you think someone should have caught on to this sooner?  It really is a shame that there are people out there like this, but at the same time it gives legitimacy to the personal finance blog realm because people ARE straying from financial advisors, and we’re there to help them along if they’re interested.

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  • Hey there Hank.

    I appreciate the nice words. The financial services business definitely has a few bad apples. There are also some excellent honest, advisors, as well, but you don’t tend to hear about them.

    Like anything you have to do your homework, like finding a good lawyer or doctor etc.

    The problem is when there’s a lot of money and commissions, greed and human emotion can become skewed and the line gets blurred.

    I think you gave me an idea for a post and I’ll reference this post. Thanks

    regards,
    Ciaran

    p.s.- Part of my mission on my blog is to help implement some change and the way the public view advisors, more on how I plan on doing that in the future;)

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