Tim Duncan is a great basketball player. In 18 years as a professional athlete, he has been an All Star in 15 of those years. Although I rarely get home to Texas, Duncan is both revered and loved in the San Antonio area. With fame, however, comes some risk.
Becoming famous and making big bucks also means you become a bigger target. And Duncan is no exception.
InvestmentNews claims that Duncan lost $20 million to investment adviser Charlie Banks. Earlier this year he sued Banks.
Many defendants hide under a rock when sued. Not Banks. He isn’t taking the allegations lightly and claims that he has done nothing wrong. Those strenous denials have caused Duncan to speak out in an effort to warn other athletes to be careful.
No investment adviser or stockbroker can guarantee and investment. For every winner in the market there is a loser. Duncan, however, says that Banks failed to disclose that he had a financial interest in some of the deals he was recommending. If true, that creates a serious conflict of interest.
There is no license history for Banks found on either the FINRA BrokerCheck system or from the SEC. (FINRA is short for the Financial Industry Regulatory Authority.) That suggests that Banks is not licensed to sell investments or securities.
We continue to see these sad stories of professional athletes being sucked into an investment scam. Often the thief in these cases is the athlete’s own agent!
Twenty million dollars is a tremendous amount of money to lose. Luckily Duncan is such a great athlete that he has other money saved. Athletes are often targeted by fraudsters because of their signficant wealth and lack of investment experience or financial education.
Assuming Duncan’s claims are accurate, we still have no idea if Duncan will ever collect a penny.
Collection becomes an issue whenever a financial adviser loses in court. Insurance coverage is often nonexistent. Assuming Charlie Banks has insurance, most policies exclude coverage if the financial adviser or agent embezzled the funds. If the money was stolen, any insurance company that insures Banks will probably deny coverage and refuse to defend the case.
Why? Typical liability policies exclude intentional criminal acts.
If you lost money to some type of an investment scam, seek legal help immediately. Often only the first to file suit receive any money. Insurance in these cases is often inadequate or nonexistent. When that happens it become a race to the courthouse in the hopes of beating other creditors to the defendant’s wealth.
As a firm, we have handled several celebrity cases. We are mindful of privacy and the need for confidentiality. All inquiries are protected by the attorney – client privilege and kept strictly confidential. See also our celebrity fraud information page.
MahanyLaw – America’s Fraud Recovery Lawyers