Broker Michael Donnelly sentenced to prison after defrauding elderly, SEC says

He provided fake information about their investment holdings to hide his scheme

Apr 13, 2016 @ 5:37 pm

By Christine Idzelis

A federal court in Philadelphia has sentenced broker Michael Donnelly to 99 months in prison for stealing money from elderly and unsophisticated investors, according to the Securities and Exchange Commission.

Mr. Donnelly, the former president of Wilmington, Del.,-based Coastal Investment Advisors Inc. and its broker-dealer, pleaded guilty to securities and wire fraud in December, the SEC said Wednesday. His imprisonment will be followed by three years of supervised release and he must pay $1.99 million in restitution.

Mr. Donnelly, of Lecanto, Fla., took money from elderly and unsophisticated clients from 2007 through August 2014 to cover his personal expenses instead of investing it as promised, according to the charges made by the agency last year. He provided false account statements and trade confirmations, repeatedly telling them their investments were performing well, according to the SEC.

Mr. Donnelly is permanently barred from the securities industry.

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