OGDEN – A Kaysville man has been charged with scamming 15 clients out of nearly $900,000 through fraudulent investments.
Dean Hamilton, 39, was charged Friday in 2nd District Court with 10 felonies of sales fraud that allegedly took place from Jan. 1, 2009, to May 1, 2011.
Hamilton offered insurance and private securities investments through Dee Randall’s Horizon Cos., which operated as a Ponzi scheme, charges state. He collected a percentage amount for each of his clients’ investments, according to court documents, totaling more than $30,000 of direct compensation.
Hamilton worked for West Jordan-based Galileo Financial, but with the exception of Oct. 16, 2009, to Dec. 31, 2009, was not authorized to sell securities products, charges state.
Through offices provided by Galileo, Hamilton met his clients at credit unions, calling himself a financial adviser, but he was never authorized by Galileo or the credit unions to sell Horizon securities, according to Utah Division of Securities analyst Charles Lyons Jr.
Hamilton met with one client in 2009 at Summit One Credit Union to discuss retirement planning that would give her more interest than the typical CD, and advised her to invest money in Horizon Auto Funding, promising her an interest return of 12 percent, charges state.
The woman invested more than $65,000, and in 2011, after receiving a promissory note that she was receiving interest, she made a second investment for more than $250,000 with Hamilton, court records indicates.
The woman understood the investment would be in properties and that she would receive 14 percent interest annually, charges state. The money was allegedly put into Horizon Auto Funding, and the client never received interest or a return of her principal payments, charges state.
Overall, Horizon Cos. accumulated $72 million from 700-plus investors, charges state. According to Lyons, Hamilton continued to gain business even after Randall declared bankruptcy on Dec. 20, 2010.
After hearing of Hamilton’s sales through Horizon, Galileo terminated his employment in January 2011. Hamilton said he used Galileo and the credit union offices during his sales of Horizon securities to gain the respect and trust of clients in a letter accepting his termination.
Charges against Hamilton include three counts each of securities fraud, sale of unregistered security, and unlicensed broker-dealer or agent, and one count of pattern of unlawful activity. In all, he’s charged with four second-degree felonies and six third-degree felonies.
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