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Business Observer Wednesday, Feb. 6, 2019 1 week ago

Securities fraud complaint alleges $7M scam

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A Tampa financial consultant and his company are targets of the ongoing investigation.

TALLAHASSEE — The Florida Office of Financial Regulation has filed an administrative complaint against seven firms and individuals, including Tampa financial consultant Wally Mackey and his company, Sycamore Group Inc., for allegedly selling unregistered securities of Woodbridge Capital Investments Inc. and other associated companies.

In a press release, the OFR says the 57 victims of the scam, many of whom are elderly, lost nearly $7 million, collectively.

The other parties named in the complaint are Phillip Ball; Gordon Hannah; Retirement Planning Solutions LLC; Kevin Quinn; and LTC Planning Inc. According to Florida Department of State records, Quinn is the president of LTC Planning, headquartered in Trinity, in Pasco County.

“Protecting Floridians from fraud and abuse is one of my top priorities, especially when it deals with our seniors,” OFR CFO Jimmy Patronis states in the release. “They have worked their entire life to build a nest egg and cannot afford to have it stolen by scam artists. Let me be clear: If you commit fraud in Florida you will be caught and you will be held accountable.”

According to the release, the investigation into the sale of Woodbridge Capital Investments securities, which began in November 2017, is ongoing. Woodbridge investors who have not received a questionnaire from the OFR are encouraged to contact the agency at 850-487-9687.

“Preying on our elderly population for financial gain is a heinous crime,” OFR Interim Commissioner Pamela Epting states in the release. “The Florida Office of Financial Regulation is committed to protecting Floridians from bad actors, and our investigative team will continue working this case to ensure those responsible for fraud and illegal financial activity are brought to justice.”

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