Top Ten Ways to Avoid Losing Money in a Financial Scam – Tip #2

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Last time we discussed the importance of slowing down and taking your time when making investment decisions. This week, I am addressing another important aspect of protecting yourself from fraud: doing your homework before handing over your hard-earned money. Tip #2 — Do Your Homework Many scammers rely on the fact that potential victims will… Read more »

Another Sad Story of Affinity Fraud Within the LDS Community in Utah

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Editor’s Note: I often write about the dangers of trusting people in your LDS ward or religious community who are pitching investments, but real stories are sometimes more effective. Below is a CLASSIC example of how members of the LDS Church are targeted for fraud. This story was published in the Deseret News on Sep… Read more »

Top Ten Ways to Avoid Losing Money in a Financial Scam – Tip #1

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Investment fraud is a big issue here in Utah, largely due to our close-knit social and religious communities, which can be prime targets for “affinity fraud.”  “Affinity fraud” is a scam that is perpetrated by someone you trust. Scammers use relationships to build trust and legitimacy for their “pitch.” Those relationships can be with family… Read more »

Why Is Utah Home To So Many Ponzi Schemes?

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EDITORS NOTE: this is a repost of a story that aired on our local NPR affiliate, KUER on December 30, 2019. Doug Hronek is a client of mine who agreed to speak publicly about this experience. We have filed lawsuit against Live Abundant and its agents on behalf of Doug and a number of other… Read more »

BREAKING: Vescor Ponzi Mastermind Val Southwick Has Been Paroled

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Val Southwick, who was convicted of defrauding more than $140 million from hundreds of Utah residents, was quietly paroled last month after serving just ten years, according to KSL News. He pleaded guilty to nine counts of securities fraud, each second-degree felonies, and was sentenced to serve anywhere from 9 to 135 years in Utah… Read more »

More Legal Trouble for Zane Jeppeson

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This is actually the third post I have written about a guy named Zane Jeppeson of Garland, Utah. My prior posts can be found here and here. Today’s update comes to us courtesy of The Leader out of Tremonton, Utah. Apparently Mr. Jeppeson is having a hard time getting his restitution paid and may go… Read more »

Top Ten Ways To Avoid Losing Money In A Financial Scam*

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Every week Utah residents lose money by investing with friends, family or neighbors – people they knew and trusted. Investment fraud is a big problem here in Utah, largely because our close-knit communities are a prime target for “affinity fraud.” Our state has a long history of financial scams and Ponzi schemes, many of which have… Read more »

Rust Rare Coin: An Analysis of Utah’s Latest Massive Ponzi Scheme

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Imagine waking up one day and discovering that all of your retirement savings were gone; all the money you had been working to save had evaporated in a poof. That’s what happened to over 200 people on November 15th.  They had invested in a “Silver Pool” investment promoted by Gaylen Rust who claimed he had… Read more »