3 Replies Latest reply on Nov 12, 2014 9:38 AM by BoBraxton

    got you covered : don't move


      "Investment adviser's scams took millions" front page of today's METRO section. "Defendant pleads guilty; many victims worked for Fairfax schools." I read the article just now. In every case, the "scam" involved moving money (from this to that). The (as it turns out) victims trusted and believed. In my opinion the individual "investor" (for retirement, in retirement) needs to have a lot more trust in themselves and believe themselves. I wrote personal response:

      into own

      bank account



      he was





      all the




      invest money

      seeking guidance


      don’t know if

      we’ll ever

      get money




      twenty years

        • Re: got you covered : don't move

          This guy was NOT your average small-time skimmer. He defrauded his own family and managed to gain access to NSA (National Security Agency) databases (you know, the people that like to listen on cellphone calls).


          "....In a statement of facts filed with his plea agreement, Parker admitted to conducting four distinct fraudulent schemes since 2006:

          • Fraudulent Credit Cards: Parker obtained and used numerous credit cards in the names of his elderly grandmother and grandfather, as well as in his own name and his teenage daughter’s Social Security number.  Parker did not have permission to obtain these cards, but he nevertheless used them to make more than $70,000 worth of unauthorized purchases.
          • European “Hard Times Cafe” Franchise Investment Scam: Making numerous false statements, Parker convinced two individuals to invest in the European franchise rights to the Hard Times Cafe.  As a result of these misrepresentations, investors lost more than $120,000.
          • False Contract with French Government: Parker convinced a former girlfriend to give him more than $90,000 to relieve him of an employment contract with the French government.  In reality, Parker neither worked for the French government nor used that money to pay the French government.
          • Improper National Security Agency Access: Based on misrepresentations about the extent of his background and experience in the intelligence and national security fields, Parker obtained and exceeded authorized access to secure National Security Agency computer databases.  Parker used this improper access for his private financial gain—namely, to further a government consulting contract. "


          So much fraud would be eliminated, a la Bernie Madoff, if consumers knew the first rule of using a financial advisor:

          Rule #1: NEVER, EVER, should you write a check to the advisor!


          The reason? No advisor should ever actually HOLD your funds. A financial institution or licensed brokerage should be the agency wherein your funds are invested. Independent advisors, for example, use commercial reputable firms, such as Associated Securities/Bank of NY, or Charles Schwab, etc. That institution is who you make the check(s) out to.


          Yes, you can pay an advisor's fees with a check, but 98% of people don't unless they're professional executors/trustees. Fees can always be deducted from your brokerage account and most advisors prefer this, unless they're only working with you on an hourly basis.


          Advisors manage your portfolio. They do not hold assets. Zip. Never. Nada.


          Not surprising this sleazebag picked on the elderly. My own MIL would be a prime victim; she trusts everyone who smiles at her. Needless to say, between her dementia and naivete, we're the ones who work with the CFP to handle her money.

            • Re: got you covered : don't move

              I did not learn in kindergarten Everything I need(ed) to know. My father (who died 1988) in his dementia gave a "loan" and lost more than $30,000 - which my mother (seven years younger) would never be able to recover (a penny) and I (relative to a close friend from another continent) managed to give a "loan" which cost me and my spouse $16,000 plus the interest (including repaying $11,000 principal) on our son's part of that amount. Fortunately this (circa 1993) experience pointed me to the road where I / we would be able to risk through years and years in no-load low-fee mutual funds, IRA, Roth IRA, 403(b) and such. Thank you for your strongly stated information, which helps me at age seventy.