Robert Yun Hyun, 35 of Bellevue, Washington pleaded guilty recently in Federal Court in Seattle to five counts of Securities Fraud. Hyun is scheduled to be sentenced by Chief U.S. District Judge Robert Lasnik on June 24, 2005.
According to charging papers, Hyun worked as a financial representative for New England Financial (NEF), an affiliate of MetLife. Between July 2002 and August 2003 Hyun told clients and non-clients that he had a great investment opportunity for them to purchase shares of stock with a high rate of return.
At times, Hyun reportedly claimed that MetLife and New England Financial were buying a bank and it would be profitable. Hyun told these potential investors that as a MetLife/NEF employee he had the opportunity to invest in the bank acquisition before the shares went public. Hyun stated the investment was confidential and he had investors write checks directly to him. In fact, Hyun reportedly knew there was no bank acquisition and no opportunity to purchase stock. Hyun collected from numerous individuals some $276,000 that he reportedly used for his own benefit.
Additionally, Hyun admits in his plea agreement that he used the identity of one of his clients to sell off financial products belonging to the client. The client and his wife had planned to use some $77,000 in these mutual funds for their children’s education. Instead Hyun pretended to be the client, sold off the funds and kept the proceeds for his own benefit. The total amount of fraud admitted by Hyun is $353,717.
Securities Fraud is punishable by up to 20 years in prison, up to three years of supervised release and a fine of up to five million dollars.
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