The right financial advisor can help you with your money goals, while the wrong one can steal your money and identity. This was the case for a retired Maryland man. He lost $1 million after his financial advisor drew checks from his retirement money. The financial advisor has since been suspended by the Financial Industry Regulatory Authority (FINRA). He is facing charges of aggravated identity theft and wire fraud.
Eddy Blizzard, a 42-year-old financial advisor from Perry Hall, Maryland, siphoned funds from his client’s retirement accounts. The client had retired in 2003 after working at a commercial air conditioning company for 40 years. He was 75 years old when he died in March 2020.
In 2003, the client took his retirement assets to a bank and Blizzard became the man’s financial advisor. In 2005, Blizzard told the client he was going independent, but that was a lie. Blizzard would meet with the client in a car outside the bank’s offices in Catonsville. The meetings would last 30-45 minutes. In 2010, Blizzard asked the client to give him 15-20 blank checks.
Blizzard told the client that his retirement funds were protected and would not lose value. The client was under the impression that Blizzard was paying his mortgage. However, those payments were not being made, causing the client’s home to go into foreclosure in the fall of 2019.
On 12 different occasions, the client attempted to withdraw money from his bank accounts, but was told there was insufficient funds. In August 2019, the client went to Blizzard’s home to talk to him in person, Blizzard would not come to the door. However, he later told the client that all his money was gone.
Between January 2013 and August 2019, the client’s accounts showed 242 distributions totaling $1.4 million. After deducting the taxes and fees, $1 million was deposited into the client’s bank account.
Between April 2016 and April 2019, Blizzard deposited approximately 112 checks from the client’s account into various bank accounts held by Blizzard and his wife. The total amount of these checks was roughly $848,000. These disbursements resulted in a federal income tax bill totaling $63,000.
In 2017, Blizzard was fired from SunTrust Investment Services for violating trade execution policies. In 2018, he was suspended by FINRA for not complying with an arbitration award.
Blizzard faces up to 20 years in federal prison for wire fraud, as well as an additional two years for aggravated identity theft.
People often think that financial advisors and others who work with money are looking after their best interests. However, these people are sometimes fraudsters who are stealing people’s money and identities.
This type of situation is considered fraud, which can result in stiff penalties. You could spend decades in prison. Protect yourself with the right legal help. The Columbia white collar crimes attorneys at Law Offices of Todd K. Mohink, P.A. can provide you with a solid defense. Schedule a consultation today. Call (410) 774-5987 or fill out the online form. We have two offices to serve you.
7310 Ritchie Highway, Suite 910
Glen Burnie, MD 21061
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10440 Little Patuxent Parkway,
Columbia, MD 21044