Dallas Billionaire Brothers Charged with Texas Securities Fraud

Following a six-month probe, US Securities and Exchange Commission has charged two Dallas billionaires with Texas securities fraud. Brothers Charles and Samuel Wyly are accused of taking part in a financial fraud scheme that garnered them over $550 million in illicit gains.

The two men are accused of trading stock in four companies that they were the directors of and devising a securities scheme involving bogus subsidiaries and trusts in the Cayman Islands and the Isle of Man to cover up over $750 million of stock sales in Sterling Commerce Inc., Michaels Stores Inc, Scottish Annuity & Life Holdings Ltd., and Sterling Software Inc.

The SEC is also accusing the Wylys of making an insider trading gain of $31.7 million when they made a bet in Sterling Software, which they own, that was “massive and bullish” in 1999 after deciding to sell the company. Computer Associates bought the firm for $4 billion in stock in March 2000.

Also charged with Dallas securities fraud is the Wylys’ attorney Michael French and broker Louis Schaufele.The SEC claims that the Wylys and French either should have known or knew that they had disclosure obligations because of their roles as owners and directors of over 5% of company stock. The defendants are accused of issuing hundreds of misleading statements that allowed the brothers to conduct trades without detection, including large block trades involving of over 14 million shares.

The SEC contends the two brothers used the proceeds from the alleged Texas securities fraud to acquire real estate, art, and jewelry. They also are accused of using the money to donate to charitable causes.

The SEC wants to get back ill-gotten gains, impose civil fines, prevent the two men from serving as director or officer of a public company, and other remedies. An attorney for the brothers says that the securities charges are without merit.

“This is a situation in which wealthy investors may find that they can seek tax refunds by characterizing the loss on their investment as a “theft lost” rather than as a capital loss carry-forward. In total, our clients have received millions of dollars in refunds using this technique,” says Dallas Securities Lawyer William Shepherd.

Related Web Resources:
SEC Charges Corporate Insider Brothers With Fraud, SEC, July 29, 2010
SEC Charges Wyly Brothers With $550 Million Fraud, ABC News, July 29, 2010
Contact our Dallas securities fraud law firm today.