By Bradd Milove
Kim Kardashian and NBA free-agent Kris Humphries were married this summer in one of the most expensive and extravagant ceremonies on record. However, after a few months of “wedded bliss”, Kardashian has already filed for divorce – leaving Humphries alone to pick up the pieces, not only of his brief marriage, but also of an unfortunate investment decision that cost him hundreds of thousands of dollars at the hands of a fraudulent financial advisor.
reports that Humphries has accused a wedding guest by the name of Andrey C. Hicks of scamming him into a substantial hedge fund investment in the Locust Offshore Fund LTSD – a venture that, according to subsequent investigation by the Securities and Exchange Commission, was fictitious in “virtually every aspect.” After misrepresenting his credentials to Humphries and other investors, allegedly claiming to hold several Harvard degrees and a position at Barclays Capital, Hicks secured an investment of $1.7 million from the newlywed NBA star. He has since been arrested for spreading what Boston SEC office director David P. Bergers described as a “brazen web of lies” constituting “outright fraud” – and faces fines of up to $250,000 in addition to a 20-year prison sentence if convicted.
Together with a long line of illustrious sports figures and other celebrities, including the likes of Scottie Pippen, Eric Dickerson, John Elway and now Jets quarterback Mark Brunell, Kris Humphries fell prey to the manipulative persuasion of a purported financial advisor – and paid the price in the form of highly avoidable losses that stand little chance of recovery. As young, successful, high profile and incredibly wealthy individuals, Humphries and his fellow fraud victims are prime targets for unscrupulous financial advisors and downright cons. Their best defense? To align themselves (and their assets) with legitimate, experienced and registered financial advisors – and to steer clear of opportunities proposed by new acquaintances, agents and industry peers.
Safe investment and recovery strategies from San Diego’s investment attorneys
Young celebrities with ready cash and little practical investment experience are frequently targeted by dishonest investment promoters, and as such are at the highest risk when it comes to the solicitation of fraudulent investments. However, it is important to remember that anyone lacking a thorough understanding of proposed investments and legitimate financial planning can suffer losses if they choose to invest without the guidance of a trained, registered professional.
Regardless of your profession or celebrity status, it’s important to play it safe, particularly as an inexperienced or untrained investor. Before doing business with any financial advisor, investors should research the advisor’s background and credentials. This information is easily accessible through the website sponsored by the Financial Industry Regulatory Authority, a.k.a. FINRA. To investigate the regulatory history of a purported financial expert, just go to
, click on “Broker Check” and input the advisor’s name. Investors can use the FINRA database to see whether the advisor in question has been the subject of customer complaints, regulatory suspensions, fines or censures – and in the process, learn much more about the investment process and safe practices for the future.
Ultimately, it’s up to investors to choose a trustworthy advisor; and as experienced
, our advice is to choose wisely from the outset. Seek out an experienced and registered financial advisor before committing to any major investments; and if you or someone you know has already been victimized by dishonest advisors or investment scams, contact our seasoned legal team for expert counsel and assistance. To learn more, visit us online: