Douglas P. Simanski, a former Next Financial investment adviser and broker, has pleaded guilty to a $4.5M investor fraud for the criminal charges of wire fraud, securities fraud, and submitting false income tax returns. He is accused of bilking over 30 clients over a 14-year period.
According to the US Attorney’s Office for the Western District of Pennsylvania, between February 2002 and May 2016, Simanski “fraudulently obtained” about $4.5M from investors. He “fabricated” contracts for “Tax Free Investments” and “fake CDs” that came with a list of guaranteed return rates and payouts. The bogus documents were used to solicit investors.
Simanski went on to use some of the investors’ funds to issue returns to other investors to make it seem as if the “investments were legitimate.” He also used some of their money for personal spending and in his own E*Trade account. The former Next financial broker is accused of turning in income tax returns that were “false.”
Simanski is scheduled to be sentenced next year. He is facing up to 49 years in prison and a $6M fine.
In a parallel civil case, the US Securities and Exchange Commission is charging Simanski over the same fraud. In its complaint, the regulator contends that he raised over $3.9M from about 27 brokerage and investment advisory clients and that most of these victims were older investors or retired.
Simanski allegedly told investors that their money would go into one of the following ventures:
· A rental car company
· One of the coal mining companies in which he purported to possess ownership interest
· An investment that was tax-free and would give investors a fixed return for a set number of years.
The SEC contends that Simanski knew these investments were “not legitimate” and he had planned all along to use their money for himself and to pay back other investors. He asked investors issue checks to his wife’s brokerage and personal accounts.
Simanski’s investor fraud failed over two years ago when an investor submitted a complaint to the Financial Industry Regulatory Authority accusing the former Next Financial broker of not repaying him. Now, the SEC wants disgorgement of ill-gotten gains, prejudgment interest, a civil penalty, and other relief.
SSEK Law Firm – Investor Fraud Lawyers
Even if the broker or investment adviser who defrauded you is subject to criminal and/or civil fraud charges for causing your losses, it is still important that you retain the services of an experienced investor fraud law firm that can personally represent you. At Shepherd Smith Edwards and Kantas, LLP (SSEK Law Firm), we have helped thousands of investors to recoup their investment losses.
Unfortunately, older and retired investors remain a favorite target of those seeking to bilk investors. For older fraud victims who are unable to rebuild their savings or retirement funds, the consequences in additional to the financial losses, can be devastating.
SSEK Law Firm offers investors a free, no obligation initial case consultation in which we can help you explore your legal options. Call us at 800-259-9010 or contact us online today to speak with one of our broker fraud lawyers if you were represented by former Next Financial broker Simanski and you believe your investment losses may be due to fraud.