State returns .54M to investors defrauded by Robert Brennan | State | NewJerseyNewsroom.com -- Your State. Your News.

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State returns $1.54M to investors defrauded by Robert Brennan

cashh_optAt least part of the amount comes from his hidden personal pension fund

Checks totaling $1.54 million are being mailed to 72 investors who were defrauded by infamous financier Robert Brennan, the restitution coming after the state Bureau of Securities successfully sued him and then tracked down assets he had hidden.

Additional investors who were defrauded by Brennan have until May 31 to submit a claim for restitution to the court-appointed receiver.

"This is the day that many investors have been waiting for,” state Attorney General Paula T. Dow said Wednesday. “The dogged determination of our Bureau of Securities investigators and deputy attorneys general assigned to the Brennan case has brought us to this point."

The Bureau of Securities in August, 1995 filed suit against Brennan and L.C. Wegard, an investment firm that he controlled, and other defendants, alleging violations of the state Securities Law and the state Racketeer Influenced and Corrupt Organizations (the RICO) Act. That same month, Brennan filed a voluntary Chapter 11 bankruptcy petition. In June, 1999, the bureau obtained a $45 million non-dischargeable judgment against him and L.C. Wegard.

A protracted effort to find assets to satisfy the judgment then began, as Brennan claimed he did not have any. Ultimately, bureau investigators tracked down assets that Brennan had attempted to hide. A pension fund that Brennan had set up for himself was among the assets seized.

"Getting restitution for those who have been defrauded of their hard-earned money is a primary focus for us," state Acting Consumer Affairs Director Thomas R. Calcagni said. "Investment scams remain out there and the Bureau of Securities is a resource that investors can turn to when performing their due diligence."

L.C. Wegard customers during the period Oct. 1, 1991 to Sept. 30, 1994 may be qualified to file a claim if they purchased any of the following securities during this time period:

  • AGP&Co.
  • Chefs International Inc.
  • Consolidated Technology Group, Ltd. (Sequential Information Systems Inc.)
  • Diamond Entertainment Corp.
  • Common stock
  • Warrants
  • Futurebiotics Inc.
  • Gates / FA Distributing Inc.
  • Gentner Communications Corp.
  • Great American Recreation Inc.
  • Common stock
  • Zero Coupon Subordinated Debentures
  • Subordinated Pay in Kind Debentures
  • Immunotherapeutics Corp.
  • Lafayette Industries Inc.
  • Linkon Corp.
  • Metalclad Corp.
  • Nacoma Consolidated Industries Inc.
  • Non-Invasive Monitoring Systems Inc.
  • Officeland Inc.
  • PDK Labs Inc.
  • Primedex Health Systems Inc.
  • Common stock
  • Subordinated Convertible Debentures
  • Process Equipment Inc.
  • Sanyo Industries Inc.
  • Site Holdings Inc. (Site-Based Media Inc.)
  • US Transportation Systems Inc.

If the above criteria are met, investors can obtain a "Proof of Claim" online here or by writing to: Donald F. Conway, Receiver, P.O. Box 7648, Princeton, N.J. 08543-7648.

The deadline for submitting a claim has been extended by the state Superior Court to May 31.

L.C. Wegard had offices in a number of states including New Jersey, Pennsylvania, New York, Rhode Island and Illinois. The North American Securities Administrators Association has worked with regulators in these states in an effort to publicize information about the distribution plan to affected investors.

Deputy Attorney General Anna M. Lascurain, Chief of the Securities Fraud Prosecution Section, represented the bureau in the action.

The Bureau of Securities can be contacted toll-free within New Jersey at 1-866-I-INVEST (1-866-446-8378), or from outside New Jersey at 973-504-3600. The bureau's web site is located at njsecurities.gov.

– TOM HESTER SR., NEWJERSEYNEWSROOM.COM

 

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