News reports on mlive and Financial Advisor IQ report that ex-Wells Fargo adviser David Homan has been charged with embezzling thousands of dollars from the trust fund of a deceased client.
According to reports, David Homan, who is 68, was arraigned in Bay City, Michigan’s Bay County District Court for “one count of embezzlement between $50,000 and $100,000. “Law enforcement reportedly started looking into allegations regarding Mr. Homan in March 2015 following a tip from an attorney who told them that he “had stolen more than $500,000 from a trust fund,” according to mlive. The trust fund in question “had been in the name of Elizazbeth N. Stafford… who died in April 2009.” Mr. Homan was named the fund’s co-trustees in September 2003; he became its only trustee after Ms. Stafford’s death, when the fund reportedly contained approximately $516,000. Law enforcement offers reportedly “obtained a letter written by Homan” and distributed to the trust fund’s beneficiaries in 2018, which stated: “On occasion, I see things that help me to know how to do things better, and even at times, I learn things that help me to know that I may have done things in a way that others could perceive as inappropriate.” Mr. Homan had resigned from Wells Fargo four years earlier, in 2014, “during an internal compliance review.”
Investigators determined that funds were withdrawn from the trust fund “via electric fund transfers and checks written by Homan,” according to mlive; those funds were transferred to his credit card accounts. In one instance in 2013, a check for more than $34,900 was written to a local car dealership for a “Chrystler Town & Country” soon registered to his wife. Investigators conducted an audit of the fund that “revealed a total of $513,211.57 had been misappropriated” from 2009 until 2014, according to mlive. Law enforcement officers were also told that Mr. Homan had represented himself to the Stafford family as a relative—Ms. Stafford’s death certificate reportedly listed him as a nephew—though he was not. The fund’s beneficiaries reportedly told police officers that Ms. Stafford hired him in the late 1990s.
According to Mr. Homan’s FINRA-maintained BrokerCheck report, he was barred by FINRA in 2014 in connection to allegations he failed to respond to a request for information. He is also the recipient of a customer complaint alleging he “wrongfully distributed trust monies to himself and his wife” between 2009 and 2014. The complaint settled for $206,500. That report also describes his voluntary resignation from Wells Fargo Advisors in 2014 while “under internal review for failing to advise [the firm] that he was a beneficiary of a client’s trust” and for allegedly failing to obtain the firm’s approval to serve as a client’s power of attorney and personal representative.
Mr. Homan, who faces up to 15 years in prison, is “free on a personal recognizance bond,” according to mlive, and is scheduled to appear for an examination on August 30th, 2018.