INDIANAPOLIS - An Indianapolis financial advisor with more than 30 years in the business has been accused of defrauding elderly clients of tens of thousands of dollars.
On Thursday, U.S. Attorney Joe Hogsett charged 57-year-old Kevin James, of Indianapolis, with securities fraud, mail fraud and two counts of money laundering while acting as an investment advisor.
According to a criminal complaint, James is accused of offering longtime clients additional investment opportunities with higher rates of return, and then pocketing the money given to him once they cashed out their annuities.
In a second scheme, James allegedly contacted a family who had life insurance proceeds due to them. James told them a loan had been taken out on the policy and before the final payment could be paid, the family owed James $10,900.00. They wrote him two checks in that amount. The loan had already been paid and that amount was deducted prior the insurance payout, according to Hogsett.
“Stealing the hard-earned money that Hoosiers plan to retire on is inexcusable,” said Hogsett. “This office has repeatedly shown that anyone who chooses to violate the public’s trust by stealing investment funds will be held fully accountable. That commitment will never change.”
In the complaint, Hogsett alleges that James used a fake company named "FSP Investment" to conduct the scams.
According to the IRS and the Indiana Secretary of State's Office, FSP Investment never existed.
“Kevin James could have been stopped in his tracks,” said Indiana Secretary of State Connie Lawson. “James failed to register himself or his product with my office, a requirement for financial professionals. If only one investor would have called my office or checked our online database, his scheme would have crumbled. I hope this serves as a reminder to always make sure the investment product and the provider are properly registered.”
The U.S. Attorney's Office said James could face up to 55 years in prison and $250,000 in fines.