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SANTA FE – The New Mexico Regulation and Licensing Department’s Securities Division issued a cease and desist order against a Los Alamos resident who has allegedly sold securities totaling over $200,000 to mostly retirees and senior citizens in Los Alamos, in violation of state law.
Jerome Griggs Beery, who is not a state-licensed investment broker, has been ordered to cease selling unauthorized promissory notes to residents of Los Alamos and any other New Mexicans.
Beery, 79, has allegedly raised tens of thousands of dollars from at least 10 Los Alamos investors from January 2007-July 2013 with a promise of paying annual interest ranging from 4 percent to 12 percent.
All investors lost nearly $170,000.
“We want to warn Los Alamos residents about this individual who has been preying on vulnerable investors who are elderly and retirees,” said Alan R. Wilson, Securities Division director in a press release. “Mr. Beery is not a licensed investment broker and none of his promissory notes are registered with the state as required under the law. He is peddling promissory notes as investments, in a very risky and illegal scheme.”
According to state Regulation and Licensing, two Los Alamos residents invested $60,000 with Beery and lost nearly $50,000. Two other Los Alamos residents invested $50,000 and lost over $30,000.
Beery allegedly used investors’ own money to pay them back some interest payments and then stopped making any payments. Beery allegedly told two investors he invested their money in MF Global which filed for bankruptcy.
The Bankruptcy Trustee for MF Global told State Securities investigators that there was no record of Berry investing in MF Global, according to Regulation and Licensing.
Beery also raised $93,000 from promissory notes from six Los Alamos investors to remodel a home in Albuquerque, according to the press release. However, that house was remodeled two years earlier, and no remodeling occurred after Beery collected the investors’ money.
Beery filed for bankruptcy in February 1994 and he has liens from the Internal Revenue Service for unpaid taxes worth $126,000.
Wilson warned investors to be cautious before investing their money.
“The Securities Division maintains a list of all licensed brokers and approved securities for investments,” Wilson said. “By calling us or visiting our website, investors can find out if a broker is registered with the state and if the investments he or she selling is legitimate.”
The Regulation and Licensing Department’s Securities Division is tasked with protecting New Mexicans from fraud and financial abuse by licensing investment professionals, registering securities made in the state and offering anti-fraud and educational programs to the public, and investigating fraud and other violations of the state securities laws.