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Dec 2, 2020 by |

Alameda County and California Elder Abuse Attorney: Advance Fee Frauds And Other Fraudulent Investments Targeting Seniors


Brokers Target Senior Investors Through Advance Fee Frauds

Be Wary Of Unregistered Offerings

Greedy Promoters And Brokers Target Seniors 

Greedy stock promoters, financial advisors and brokers target senior investors in particular with investment opportunities offering above-market interest rates.  For the most part, these offerings are unregistered and may be tied to risky real estate, commodities, or energy-related enterprises.  Or the proposal may be structured like an annuity – an advance or upfront payment for a later income stream or lump sum payment.  These latter fraudulent arrangements are often called “advance fee frauds” and seniors are often the targets of this kind of investor fraud.   If you or a loved one is a senior citizen who has been the victim of any kind of financial fraud or financial elder abuse in Alameda County or elsewhere in California, call the financial elder abuse attorneys at Evans Law Firm, Inc. today at (415)441-8669. 

Advance Fee Frauds

Advance fee frauds ask investors to pay a fee up front – in advance of receiving any proceeds, money, stock, or warrants – in order for the deal to go through. The advance payment may be described as a fee, tax, commission, or incidental expense that will be repaid later. Some advance fee schemes target investors who already purchased underperforming securities and offer to sell those securities if an “advance fee” is paid, or target investors who have already lost money in investment schemes. Fraudsters often direct investors to wire advance fees to escrow agents or lawyers to give investors comfort and to lend an air of legitimacy to their schemes. Fraudsters also may try to fool investors with official-sounding websites and e-mail addresses and false documentations.   Advance fee frauds may also involve the sale of products or services, the offering of investments, lottery winnings, found money, or many other so-called opportunities. 

Example of Advance Fee Fraud

In a recent advance fee fraud case[1] allegedly targeting senior investors, a federal jury found two representatives of a purported investment company stole at least $5 million from victim investors.  According to evidence presented at trial, the scheme operated as an advance fee scheme which involved the defendants as promoters who promised to pay the victims a sum of money at a later date in exchange for an upfront advanced payment.  Among other misrepresentations, defendants allegedly told potential victims that their principal payments would be protected based on letters of credit and other documents that purported to be from a large financial institution.  However, these letters were allegedly fabricated.  The evidence presented at trial also showed, according to reports, that the defendants used escrow attorneys, who were themselves allegedly part of the scheme, to give the victims the appearance that their money would remain secure until the defendants’ promises had been kept.  The defendants stole at least $5 million from their victims, many of whom were elderly investors.  Defendants are all awaiting sentencing in federal court, according to a Department of Justice press release.

Contact Us

Whether you have been defrauded in an advance fee fraud or other kind of financial fraud or victimized by some other form of financial elder abuse, call Ingrid M. Evans and the other elder abuse attorneys at Evans Law Firm, Inc. at (415) 441-8669, or email us at Ingrid and the firm’s other financial elder abuse lawyers know how to investigate your case, prepare a complaint, pursue discovery, and try your case, seeking all available remedies including the recovery of attorneys’ fees and expenses in certain circumstances.

[1] Evans Law Firm, Inc. was not involved in the case in any way.

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