Man Allegedly Involved in Texas Securities Fraud Scam that Bilked Over 7,000 Deaf Investors of $3.45M is Charged by the SEC

The Securities and Exchange Commission has charged Jody Dunn with fraud. Dunn is accused of soliciting $3.45 million from over 7,000 deaf investors in a Texas securities scam. He is also deaf. According to the SEC, he engaged in material misrepresentations, the fraudulent and unregistered offering and selling of securities, and the misappropriation of investor funds.

Per the commission, Dunn told investors he would place their money with Imperia Invest IBC, which guaranteed returns of 1.2% a day. He solicited investments for Imperia between August 2007 and July 2010.

While he did send the send the remaining funds to the Imperia-owned offshore accounts, he never confirmed that the financial firm was really investing the money-even though he allegedly knew that Imperia lost investor funds and wasn’t properly crediting clients’ accounts. Dunn also never paid investors the interest they were owed and he failed to tell them that his fee was more than 10% of the money he collected from them.

Last year, the SEC charged Imperio with involvement in a $7 million fraud scam and secured a court order freezing the internet-based firms assets. The SEC claims that Imperia defrauded approximately 14,000 investors, who were told that they could only obtain their money by paying a few hundred dollars for a Visa debit card. Apparently, however, the financial firm did not have ties Visa and it never paid any money back to its victims.

In the commission’s complaint against Dunn, it is accusing him of making a number of misrepresentations to investors including:

• Claiming he would help them get into Traded Endowment Policies (viatical settlements) by having them invest through Imperia even though none of their money was used to buy TEPs.

• Claiming he knew the people behind Imperia even though he had never met anyone affiliated with the financial firm.

• Not being able to give an accurate analysis of the way he calculated profits or fees.
TEPs or Viatical Settlements
With TEPs, the insurance policy owner sells the policy before it matures. These are sold at a discount but in an amount greater than the current cash surrender value. All beneficial obligations then go to the new owner. Investors of the Imperia-offered TEP investments had to put in at least $50 for an $80,000 loan from a foreign bank. The funds were then supposed to go toward buying a TEP. The SEC is accusing Dunn of violating sections of the Securities Act and sections of the Exchange Act and Rule 10b-5 thereunder.

SEC Charges Solicitor in Investment Scheme Targeting Deaf Community, SEC, September 9, 2011
Texan defrauded deaf investors out of $3.45M, Investment News, September 12, 2011
Read the SEC Complaint (PDF)

SEC Charges Internet Company With Defrauding the Deaf, New York Observer, October 7, 2010

More Blog Posts:

Morgan Keegan & Company Ordered by FINRA to Pay $555,400 in Texas Securities Case Involving Morgan Keegan Proprietary Funds, Stockbroker Fraud Blog, September 6, 2011
Texas Minister Pleads Guilty to Involvement in $7.2M “White Hat Guys” Securities Fraud that Bilked Thousands of Petro America Corporation Investors in the US and Canada, Stockbroker Fraud Blog, June 21, 2011
Alleged $800 Affinity Fraud Scheme Prompts SEC to Sue GTF Enterprises and Its Money Manager, Stockbroker Fraud Blog, June 4, 2010
Our Texas securities fraud lawyers represent investors throughout the state. Contact our stockbroker fraud law firm to request your free case evaluation.