What You Need to Know
- A barred broker was sentenced to five years in prison for his participation in a scheme to defraud a North Carolina-based life insurance company.
- He caused about $20 million in losses to the company, which led to it being ordered into liquidation.
- Instead of investing the client’s assets in secure investment vehicles, he used the funds for his own firm.
A barred broker was sentenced on Thursday to five years in prison for his role in a scheme to defraud a North Carolina-based life insurance company, according to the Justice Department and court documents.
Bradley C. Reifler, 62, of New York caused about $20 million in losses to the company, which led to it being ordered into liquidation, Assistant Attorney General Kenneth A. Polite Jr. of the Justice Department’s Criminal Division and Eric Shen, inspector in charge of the US Postal Inspection Service Criminal Investigations Group, said in a news release.
The firm was North Carolina Mutual Life Insurance Co., according to court documents filed in related cases. The company, started in 1898, was the oldest black-owned insurance company in the US, according to Insurance Journal.
According to the Justice Department’s Dec. 1, 2020 indictment against Reifler in US District Court for the Middle District of North Carolina and other court documents, the CEO and founder of Forefront Capital Holdings was responsible for investing about $34 million of the insurance company‘s assets based on guidelines contained in a trust agreement and investment advisor agreement .
However, instead of investing the assets in secure investment vehicles as required by the agreements, Reifler misappropriated the funds for the benefit of his own companies and then used the funds for improper purposes, according to the Justice Department.
As examples, he used the funds to pay for Forefront overhead expenses and repaying prior investors to whom he owed money, the Justice Department said. Reifler also diverted other funds to risky investment vehicles that did not comply with the investment guidelines.
Additionally, during internal and external audits performed in 2016, Reifler sent the life insurance company fabricated documentation for deals with individuals and entities that didn’t exist, according to the Justice Department.
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