NEW YORK–()–National securities law firm Kurta Law is investigating claims that Oppenheimer & Co. Inc. (NYSE: OPY) failed to supervise their brokers, including John Woods, allowing them to perpetrate an alleged Ponzi scheme called Horizon Private Equity III. According to a complaint filed by the SEC, John Woods convinced elderly investors to pour money into a $110 million fraud from approximately 2008 to 2016.

John Woods allegedly operated the Ponzi scheme through his outside business, Southport Capital. The complaint alleges that Oppenheimer knew or should have known that John Woods operated this outside business. Consistent with industry regulations, this should have prompted a review of Woods’ activities, including his claims that Horizon Private Equity III was a low-risk investment and would generate high returns of 6% to 7%. John Woods and other Oppenheimer brokers claimed the money would go toward real estate projects as well as low-risk investments including government bonds. But in 2016, the fund had only $16 million of the $110 it had raised, and very little of the money had gone toward legitimate investments. Most of the money allegedly paid off earlier investors – the hallmark of a Ponzi scheme.

According to securities attorney Jonathan Kurta, “Brokerage firms have an obligation to supervise the outside business activities of their brokers. When they fail in that supervision, our firm can hold them accountable.”

Kurta Law is…

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