MIAMI and LOS ANGELES, Sept. 23, 2021 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) — National investment fraud law firm Dimond Kaplan & Rothstein, P.A. (“DKR”) (http://www.dkrpa.com) is investigating potential claims against brokerage firm Oppenheimer & Co., Inc. (“Oppenheimer”) (NYSE: OPY) on behalf of customers who invested in Horizon Private Equity III (“Horizon”). The United States Securities and Exchange Commission (“SEC”) has filed a complaint against former Oppenheimer broker John Woods and Woods’ investment advisory firm, Livingston Group Asset Management Company d/b/a Southport Capital (“Southport”), alleging that Woods ran Horizon as a Ponzi scheme for more than a decade.
Woods is believed to have solicited a significant number of Oppenheimer customers to invest in Horizon when he was registered as a broker with Oppenheimer. The SEC has alleged that Woods bilked more than 400 investors out of more than $110 million.
The Alleged Ponzi Scheme
According to the SEC’s complaint, broker John J. Woods began his Ponzi scheme in 2008 when he was a broker with Oppenheimer. The SEC has alleged that Woods often targeted elderly investors and promised guaranteed returns of 6% to 7% for two to three years.
Woods reportedly told investors that Horizon would generate returns by investing in government bonds, stocks, or small real estate projects. Investors were not told that their money would be used to pay “investment returns” to earlier investors. But the SEC says that is…