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The Department of Justice (DOJ) announced an Indictment charging Booth with securities fraud, wire fraud, and investment adviser fraud charges in connection with his years-long scheme to defraud customers of his financial services firm, Booth Financial Associates (“Booth Financial”) which is affiliated with LPL Financial and Invest Financial. Throughout Booth’s scheme, he solicited money from clients of Booth Financial and falsely promised to invest their money in securities offered outside of their ordinary advisory and brokerage accounts. Instead, he used nearly all of the money to pay personal and business expenses. In total, Booth fraudulently obtained approximately $5 million from his investors.
“As alleged, James Booth convinced his clients that he would deliver solid and secure returns on their investments. Instead, as alleged, Booth delivered only lies and deceit, and bilked some 40 clients of nearly $5 million. Booth is now in federal custody and will have to answer for his alleged crimes,” stated the DOJ.
The DOJ further stated, “In an elaborate scheme of false promises and deception, it is alleged that Booth attained almost $5 million by luring investors to move their assets with the guarantee of safer investments and higher returns. Instead, Booth allegedly pocketed the money. ”
Booth provided investors fabricated account balances and statements to prevent investors from seeking a return of their money, and to induce additional investments. He further concealed the truth from investors by using money obtained from new investors to make redemption payments to previous investors, in a Ponzi-like fashion.