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Securities News Releases
Wednesday, October 14, 2009
Contact: Laura Egerdal, (573) 526-0949
Carnahan Stops Brokerís Fraudulent Scheme
Investor Funds Were Used to Pay for Mortgage, Plastic Surgery
Jefferson City, MO Ė Secretary of State Robin Carnahanís Office today shut down a scheme run by J. Scott Schlueter of St. Louis, who allegedly sold unregistered investments and used the nearly $325,000 he collected from investors to pay personal expenses.
Schlueter, who was indicted on criminal charges in Illinois last month, established Legacy Financial Assurance Group Inc. in Missouri to sell and develop wealth retention products and services. Beginning in 1999, he raised more than $323,000 from at least three Illinois investors by promising returns of up to 7.6% interest every 45 days. Instead, Schlueter allegedly spent much of the money on personal expenses including payments to family members, mortgage payments, and purchases at jewelry stores, clothing retailers, restaurants, and a plastic surgery center.
“Missourians should check out any new investment opportunity by calling the Investment Protection Hotline,” Carnahan said. “My office will continue to crack down on anyone who seeks to cheat Missouri investors.”
Starting in 2007, Schlueter sent two of the investors account statements that stated that Schlueter was a registered representative. But Schlueter has not been registered as a broker in Missouri since May 2006, and the broker-dealer he claimed to offer the securities through had terminated him in 2005. Missouri Securities Division records indicate that neither Schlueter nor the money fund he was offering was registered with the Secretary of State's office, as required by Missouri law.
Carnahan's Securities Division began its investigation following investor complaints in September 2008 and officials in her office issued a Cease and Desist Order today against Schlueter. Because of the ongoing criminal matter Schlueter faces in Illinois, the Missouri Securities Division plans to work with all involved law enforcement agencies to conclude this case.
Schlueter has 30 days to respond to the order and request a hearing.
For more information regarding investments and fraud protection, or for information regarding a company or representative, call the Missouri Investor Hotline toll-free at 1-800-721-7996 or visit the Secretary of State's web site at www.sos.mo.gov/securities.
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To find out more about Missouri's Secretary of State's office, visit www.sos.mo.gov