April 21, 2024

Securities officials accuse Colorado man of romancing women to steal their investments

Colorado officials recently filed an injunction in Denver court to prevent a Littleton man from continuing to solicit funds from “financially vulnerable” women – mostly single mothers – whom he meets through dating apps and at a local gym. 

The Colorado Division of Securities accused 43-year-old Joseph Glen Holder, Jr., of luring a number of women in what it termed a “romance scam” that gained at least $121,000 – almost all of which was spent by Holder personally rather than earning the women seven to 10 times their initial investment promised by Holder, the agency stated in a press release

Holder was called a “serial predator” in a court document filed Jan. 31 in Denver District Court by Tung Chan, Securities Commissioner for the State of Colorado. The complaint filed by Chan claimed Holder was never legally licensed to sell securities and never informed his romantically targeted clients that his securities were unregistered. 

“He targeted financially vulnerable women, many of whom who were single mothers,” the complaint states.

RELATED  Minnesota man accused of stealing more than $1.6 million from Colorado woman in romance scam (2022)

The agency’s court document and press release do not provide a specific number of women who were impacted by the scheme, nor where they are from. But the fact the legal action was filed by the state, and not by federal authorities, implies all of Holder’s victims reside in Colorado.

Between February 2019 and September 2023, Holder obtained money from the women after he established a “romantic or close personal relationship,” the complaint states. Holder then told the women about an investment opportunity in the medical field which offered returns seven to 10 times greater than the initial investment. Records indicate the women contributed funds in amounts between $950 and $25,300. 

Furthermore, the complaint claims Holder created fake identities to convince the women to open accounts with him and later to explain delays in their investment returns. Holder allegedly showed women screenshots of text messages with “Rachel B” and “Lauren.” 

One screenshot of an alleged conversation with “Rachel B” read: “I completely understand [the potential investor’s] apprehension and I attribute that to her just not knowing you well enough. If she only knew how many lives you’ve impacted and people you’ve helped over the years then she’d (sic) probably wouldn’t have as much anxiety…Just let me know either way and I’ll get things set up. With the initial buy-in currently being at $11k, she should expect a return between $76K-$83K at the beginning of the year once her account generates. Either myself or Lauren will reach out to her at that time to complete her account.”

In another message, “Rachel B” allegedly texted Holder requesting he tell his potential investor to “PLEASE let her know that she can request her funds back at anytime (sic) without penalty. If she requests her funds back before her account generates, then she will only receive her initial buy-in amount and what it has accrued up to that point.”

“Upon information and belief,” the complaint states, “Defendant made up ‘Rachel B’ and ‘Lauren’ entirely.”

RELATED  Mother and daughter sentenced for internet romance scam (2013)

Additionally, Holder has yet to return over $20,000 to his victims, according to investigators.

“In almost all cases,” the complaint reads, “investors who were paid back, sometimes years later, were only paid back their principal. Only two investors were paid a return, and far less than the thousands per month they expected.”

RELATED  How not to fall in love with a Colorado scammer and lose hundred of thousands of dollars

The complaint also states that Holder told Division of Securities investigators that the investments were directed toward hyaluronic acid injection procedures used in a clinic owned and operated by his former employer, Dr. Michael Rimlawi. 

“In reality,” the complaint states, “no money was invested at all.”  

Notably, Rimlawi was one of 14 people convicted of health care fraud in Texas in 2021. Rimlawi was sentenced to federal prison and his medical license was revoked in that state. 

The complaint further alleges that Holder is actively trying to stop investors from working with the Division in its investigation and may still be soliciting new investors.    

A hearing in Holder’s case is scheduled for Friday in Denver District Court. 

Source link

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *


Get our latest downloads and information first.
Complete the form below to subscribe to our weekly newsletter.

100% secure your website.