Case of the Missing Money

Best-selling mystery and crime author Patricia Cornwell met her wealth management firm Anchin, Block & Anchin in court this month over allegations it mismanaged her funds and mysteriously lost millions.

Cornwall claims the firm negligently borrowed money, wrote out checks she never authorized and lost millions on a risky investment strategy she never approved. Further, the financial woes allegedly distracted the author, causing her to miss a book deadline and $15 million in advancements and commissions.

Meanwhile Achin claims the author is unfairly trying to make the firm and its employees  “scapegoats” for Cornwell’s problems. The New York firm claims that Cornwell’s spending habits, not mismanagement, drained the author’s funds. Achin also claims that Cornwell actually owes the firm over $500,000 for services performed.

The trial before a Boston jury is still ongoing.

Disappearing Act

A financial advisor who faked a suicide attempt when his alleged fraud was uncovered will be spending seven years behind bars for his shenanigans.  

A Washington federal judge on Jan. 18 sentenced Aaron Travis Beaird to 84 months of prison time, with credit for time already served, as well as ordered the former financial advisor to pay $5.7 million in restitution to over a dozen victims of his fraud.

Prosecutors claimed that Beaird misappropriated funds from fellow members of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints by pocketing clients’ annuity payments and insurance policy premiums.

When an insurance company caught Beaird attempting to collect on a life insurance policy for a client who was still alive, the advisor faked his suicide and fled to Scotland for a week.

Beaird later returned to the U.S., arrested and later pled guilty to wire fraud. Prosecutors said Beaird “stole far more than money,” saying he cheated victims out of dreams and expectations.

Go Long

Terrell Owens, an NFL wide receiver who has played for teams such as the Dallas Cowboys and Cincinnati Bengals, sued his wealth management firm Pro Sports Financial and others, claiming the firm negligently mismanaged his funds.

Owens filed a suit in Broward County, Fla., claiming Pro Sports and its employees made “numerous unusual and extraordinary withdrawals” from his account without authorization, Yahoo! Sports reported.

Further, the Jan. 4 complaint alleged the firm and Owens’ financial advisor Jeff Rubin steered him toward “illegal and highly risky investments,” including a failed Alabama casino project.