To some Zachary residents, a deal which seemed too good to be true truly wasn’t, and fortunately for those few, they didn’t invest. However, others weren’t so lucky and were conned by billionaire Robert Allen Stanford.
The future of those investors was once secure and safe but things quickly soured after money was invested with the Stanford Trust; money that is now frozen and cannot be touched.
The Baton Rouge Business Report states U.S. Rep. Bill Cassidy sent an urgent letter to Securities & Exchange Commission (SEC) Mary Schapiro on behalf of the victims of the Stanford Financial Group’s alleged $8 billion scheme. “Thousands of families across the country have lost their entire life’s savings to Stanford’s fraud and we want to stress the urgency of these matters to the SEC. Many individuals are suffering severely as a result of these events. Victims deserve to know what happened to their money,” said Cassidy. In Zachary and Baton Rouge alone, the impact is severe.
Phil Preis, a Baton Rouge attorney who represents Louisiana investors suing their financial advisors, calls South Louisiana the national epicenter of the $8 billion fraud. Pries estimates approximately 70 percent of the money involved came from Baton Rouge and surrounding areas. More than 1,000 investors have lost over $1 billion with the Bank of Antigua which is owned by the Stanford group. Antigua is one of the Leeward Islands located in the Caribbean.
Houston financier Robert Allen Stanford was arrested by the FBI on June 18 and eventually indicted by a federal grand jury in Houston. An indictment, authorities say, that could lead to more than ten years in prison. Stanford currently remains in custody and a federal judge has denied bond. Victims of the scam still do not have access to their money and the Louisiana Attorney General’s Office will continue its statewide investigation into the Stanford Group.
If you or someone you know has lost money with the Stanford Group, help is available through the www.stanfordvictimscoalition.com. Stanford Victims Coalition mission statement: Stanford Victims Coalition is an international advocacy group dedicated to fighting for the recovery of the billions of dollars belonging to the thousands of innocent people who are affected by the alleged fraud of Stanford Financial Group and Stanford International Bank in Antigua. SVC is not affiliated with any political group and there are no membership fees for victims to join.