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Wisconsin advisor charged with defrauding clients out of $1.9 million

On Behalf of | Feb 1, 2023 | Financial Advisor Misconduct

The Securities and Exchange Commission has charged a Wisconsin-based investment advisor with defrauding at least 13 advisory clients out of about $1.9 million, according to InvestmentNews.

The SEC filed a complaint in federal court in the Western District of Wisconsin against Anthony Liddle, who headed a firm in Wausau called Prosper Wealth Management.

The commission alleged that Liddle fabricated documents and made misrepresentation to his clients, many of whom were retirees. According to the complaint, he told them their holdings contained too much risk and should be replaced with securities that were less risky. But the investments that he touted as appropriate alternatives, “L” bonds from GWG Holdings, were actually rated as high risk in their prospectus.

The SEC said the advisor’s misconduct spanned the period from June 2019 to May 2022. “Liddle had advisory clients send money directly to his investment advisory company, where Liddle misappropriated client funds and never invested the money on his clients’ behalf,” the SEC stated. “The complaint alleges that Liddle then fabricated statements and made purported investment payments that were in fact coming from defrauded client funds, to advisory clients in order to continue his fraudulent scheme.”

Liddle was charged violating the antifraud provisions of Section 17(a) of the Securities Act of 1933, Section 10(b) of the Securities Exchange Act of 1934 and Rule 10b-5 thereunder, and Sections 206(1) and (2) of the Investment Advisers Act of 1940. The SEC is seeking injunctive relief, disgorgement with prejudgment interest, a civil penalty, and a bar against Liddle serving as an officer or director of a public company.

The U.S. Department of Justice has also filed felony criminal charges against Liddle consisting of one count of money laundering, and one count of fraud.

The attorneys at Lewitas Hyman are uniquely qualified to represent individual investors in investment-related claims against financial professionals and their firms. We understand how financial professionals and their firms are supposed to operate through decades of experience working for the SEC and firms like Morgan Stanley and UBS Financial Services. If you have suffered investment losses as a result of misconduct by your financial professional or their firms, contact Lewitas Hyman at (888) 655-6002 or through our online contact form for a free consultation.