Friday, September 27, 2013

Con Man Gets 40 for Stealing From Elderly

The 380th Texas District Court sentenced Robert Joseph Mangiafico, Jr. to 40 years in prison for stealing over $655,000.00 from elderly women. Justice Benjamin Smith handed down the sentence after Mangiafico plead guilty to four of the counts against him. The four confidence schemes he admitted to conducting resulted in the theft of over $450,000.00 from four elderly women.

The hearing lasted over two days and involved just the sentencing portions.

Mangiafico was named in an indictment of Security Financial Services, LLC owned by Thomas Grimshaw. Both were indicted by a grand jury in 2011 on charges of theft, fraud, money laundering, and organized crime. 

The men convinced elderly women to liquidate legitimate securities in order to buy fraudulent ones. Their scheme ran from at least 2007-08. In 2009, Grimshaw lost his license to sell financial securities in '09 when allegations first emerged.

Mangiafico never had a license to sell securities, insurance, or any form of annuity. Previously, Mangiafico had several other run-ins with the law including four convictions for theft and at least one DUI conviction. Allegedly, he may have also committed perjury and given false statements to police officers.

This conviction is the latest in a string of investigations and prosecutions of security and financial fraud that the Texas Securities Board (TSB) actively pursued. Other major investigations and prosecutions from recent months include a 25-year state sentence for a man who stole money from an elderly woman he convinced to invest in non-existent oil and gas wells.

In another win for the TSB's anti-fraud team, Sami A. London, also known as Sami Mahomad, was found guilty of securities fraud. He was selling fake oil futures. He sold the securities for an oil project, but spent the money his victims invested on personal items, instead. He was sentenced to 10 years, under delayed adjudication (probation) and restitution. London's first oil and gas company, Imperial Resources, LLC, went bankrupt in 2007. He never revealed that bankruptcy to his potential investors, which violates full-disclosure laws as well.