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Old 12-20-2007, 03:55 PM   #1
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Vulnerable Retiree Stories

I was surprised at how much I enjoyed this article. I began by skimming it and kept finding nugget after nugget. It does not seem to have any earth-shattering news or data, but it is a well written piece that I got a lot out of.


Quote:
Retirees are vulnerable because they're looking for ways to stretch their income. Plus, many seniors are afraid to ask questions, consult with their children or complain to regulators. "A lot of people think they'll lose their independence if they admit they were taken advantage of," says Barry Lanier, chief of the bureau of investigations for the Florida Department of Financial Services. When Finra surveyed senior investors last year, only 56% of the victims who admitted to being defrauded said they had reported the incident.
The money that seniors have amassed is "usually irreplaceable," says Jacob Zamansky, a securities lawyer in New York City. "They can't afford to lose the principal, so they generally need to be conservative. Anything that doesn't meet that investment objective should be viewed very suspiciously."
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One night in 2005, Virginia LaValley called her son, Ken, and told him she had just made a new investment that was paying 7% annually. "I don't know a whole lot about investing," Ken admits. Still, he thought that his mother, then 75, was mentally sharp enough to make her own decisions. But when co-workers told Ken that earning a guaranteed 7% was unrealistic, he figured "something wasn't right."
I especially liked this one. I have attended about 20 of these seminars and have always been very skeptical but well fed. I always recall what Scott Burns said once about free-lunch seminars~ "Enjoy to free meal. But don't drink the Kool-Aid."

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Be skeptical of any claims made at a free-lunch seminar, a common sales tactic to get seniors into a one-on-one meeting. And don't trust a salesperson just because he or she has a professional designation that focuses on seniors. Such credentials sometimes require little more than paying a fee and passing an easy take-home test. (Look up the requirements for professional designations at Finra.org.)
http://finance.yahoo.com/focus-retir...-post-spending
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Old 12-20-2007, 04:27 PM   #2
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I had one that was one of the most frustrating cases I had when doing fraud investigations, reported by a neighbor who looked after her. A retired army nurse with severe short-term memory loss had some tree trimming work done at her home, which was done. The tree-trimmer came back the next day to collect payment, which she paid. He came back the next day, she paid, he came back the next day, she paid, etc. until there was no money left.

When I went to talk to her I left my business card on the coffee table and when I got back to my office 20 minutes later, another neighbor called, wanting to know why I had been there - the victim had no memory of my visit.

I even had the bank tapes showing this dirtball cashing her checks, but the State's Attorney wouldn't charge, saying (and probably rightfully so) that theft could not be proven because we couldn't prove WHY she had written the checks.

For example, if the tree-trimmer told her a sob story about his sick little girl and she loaned him money, that's poor judgment on her part but it's not criminal. Personally I would have run with it and charged just so I could say I'd done everything I could, but it wasn't my decision to make. Very frustrating!

Hopefully there's a special place in hell for that tree-trimmer.
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Old 12-20-2007, 05:16 PM   #3
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Hopefully there's a special place in hell for that tree-trimmer.
Ever see Sometimes a Great Notion? Maybe your tree trimmer gets to have that massive Douglas Fir squash his leg, each and every day for eternity.

Ha
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Old 12-21-2007, 12:34 AM   #4
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Hopefully there's a special place in hell for that tree-trimmer.
Hell is a religion-based concept that many on this board would deny exists. So, I'd just castrate the tree-trimmer and shove his nuts in his mouth while he's standing on his head in a bucket of crap whistling Dixie. Kind of gets the job done without any religious belief assumptions, if you know what I mean......
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Old 12-21-2007, 03:00 AM   #5
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Cons have always been around (often sociopaths) and they will continue to thrive in a world of vulnerable marks. These people eventually get caught. Once the money is gone people eventually catch on. One way to stop the fraud and mishandling... Very stiff 30-35 year hard-time maximum security prison sentences (no good behavior sentence reductions or parole).


It should be consider more than mere money theft and be considered as a form of predatory molestation.

That will weed out the mere opportunists that have no morals and narrow it down to the out and out criminals and crime rings.
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Old 12-21-2007, 09:14 AM   #6
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That will weed out the mere opportunists that have no morals and narrow it down to the out and out criminals and crime rings.
The difference escapes me.
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Old 12-21-2007, 09:28 AM   #7
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Hell is a religion-based concept that many on this board would deny exists....
Maybe that's why I tend to keep the door open to the idea that a creator and an afterlife exist. It *does* seem attractive at times!

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It should be consider more than mere money theft and be considered as a form of predatory molestation.
Maybe it fits the category of 'hate crime'? Targeting a specific group of people? I (think I) know that 'hate crimes' are not limited to racial/religious definitions.

-ERD50
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Old 12-21-2007, 01:03 PM   #8
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Maybe it fits the category of 'hate crime'? Targeting a specific group of people? I (think I) know that 'hate crimes' are not limited to racial/religious definitions.
-ERD50
All we need is more slicing and dicing of crime categories. IMO, nothing helpful has been done in US criminal justice in the past 50 years anyway.

Ha
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