The former COO of AmeriFirst Acceptance Corp. and AmeriFirst Funding Corp. was recently convicted of multiple counts of Texas securities fraud and mail fraud for his involvement in bilking over 500 investors of over $50 million. A lot of the victims of Dennis Woods Bowden were retirees.
Per evidence that was given at trial, the 58-year-old executive and Jeffrey Charles Bruteyn, who was AmeriFirst’s managing director, made available Secured Debt Obligations (SDOs) as promissory note offerings to raise millions of dollars from investors in Florida and Texas. A lot of these clients, who were no longer employed, had hoped to place their money in investments that were safe.
While Bruteyn, who was convicted of nine counts of Texas securities fraud, directed brokers to sell the securities, it was Bowden who deceived and misled and defrauded them by signing the documents that were given to investors and misrepresenting/not disclosing material facts about the securities and the risks involved. For example, he falsely represented to investors that:
• A commercial bank was guaranteeing investors’ investments Interest in certain kinds of collateral was secured by the investors’ principal
• Insurance had been bought to protect investors’ money • The SDO’s issuers were also acting as the fiduciary of investors.
In fact, all of these “facts” were untrue. Instead, Bowden served as “fiduciary” and spent investors’ money on things they had not approved or even known about.
Senior Financial Fraud
Unfortunately, senior financial fraud continues to be a huge problem in Texas and elsewhere in the US. The state of Texas even recently started running public service announcements to warn investors to be wary of “free lunch” seminars that promise free meals but were, in fact, an excuse to “hard sell” attendees into making investments that may not be appropriate for them. The PSAs also are reminding seniors to check the background of anyone they decide to go into an investment opportunity with-even if the other person is a friend, a fellow community member, or a co-worker.
Unfortunately, retirees continue to be the favorite targets for many seeking to bilk investors. With many of these elderly seniors no longer having a regular source of income, becoming the victim of Texas securities fraud can have devastating consequences, making it difficult for the victims to afford the care they may need or maintain the quality of life they have worked so hard to give themselves.
Contact our Texas securities fraud law firm today. At Shepherd Smith Edwards and Kantas, LTD, LLP we are dedicated to helping our clients recoup their losses. Your first consultation with one of our Dallas securities fraud lawyers is free. Contact us online or call (800) 259-9010.
CEO of Dallas-based AmeriFirst found guilty of securities fraud for swindling $50 million from retirees, The Dallas Morning News, December 22, 2011
Defendant Deceived Investors About Supposed Fraud Scheme That Involved More Than 500 Victims and More Than $50 Million, Justice.gov, December 21, 2011
More Blog Posts:
Texas Securities Fraud: BNY Mellon Capital Markets LLC Settles Allegations of Rigged Bond Bidding for $1.3M, Stockbroker Fraud Blog, January 24, 2012
TD Bank Ordered to Pay Texas-Based Coquina Investments $67M Over $1.2 Billion Ponzi Scheme, Stockbroker Fraud Blog, January 19, 2012
Texas Securities Fraud: SEC Charges Life Partners Holdings Inc. in Life Settlement Scam, Stockbroker Fraud Blog, January 4, 2012