The Securities and Exchange Commission yesterday charged an ex-MetLife broker with swindling a 9/11 widow out of $250,000.
In 2004, Kevin James Dunn Jr., 28, the former broker, told the widow (not identified by the SEC) to invest the $2 million she received from the September 11 Victim Compensation Fund with MetLife, and to allow him to manage the investment.
The widow’s husband was a Port Authority police officer who died in the World Trade Center terrorist attacks.
Initially, the widow purchased $1.25 million in shares of some tax-exempt mutual funds through her MetLife brokerage account.
The rest of the money went toward a MetLife annuity contract, according to the SEC.
He also raked in a fraudulent $23,157 commission when he transferred proceeds from the mutual funds to the annuity contract.
Beginning in Sept. 2005, Mr. Dunn misappropriated $248,000 from the widow by fraudulently creating a fund in both their names and forging her signature on wire transfers from the joint account, the SEC alleged in its complaint.
Mr. Dunn also lied to the widow about the status of her investments, tricking her into giving him blank checks, which he put in his own account, according to the suit.
This February, Mr. Dunn was fired from MetLife but continued swindling money from the widow, the SEC said.
The SEC is ordering the ex-broker to repay the misappropriated cash, plus interest, and civil penalties.
Mr. Dunn is also facing an indictment from federal prosecutors in Brooklyn, New York.
He faces mail and wire-fraud charges and may do up to 20 years in prison if he’s convicted, according to the U.S. Attorney’s Office for the Eastern District of New York.