According to a recent article in the Press Democrat, 62-year-old Gary T. Armitage, a former investment advisor and resident of Santa Rosa, has now been sentenced to ten years in prison after a plea bargain. Armitage was arrested in 2009 and, along with two other men, charged with many different counts of securities fraud for his part in an alleged Bay Area Ponzi scheme that lost millions of dollars and affected more than 2,000 people across California.
Victims in the investment scam were reportedly lied to and told that the proposed investments were “risk free.” Unfortunately, it is believed Armitage engaged in risky and illegal investment trading while covering up losses and spending investors’ cash on luxury real estate and keeping up the appearance of legitimacy. Judge Bradley Boeckman, in Shasta County Superior Court, heard heart-wrenching stories of loss from Armitage’s alleged Ponzi scheme victims, including stories of broken trust, manipulation, lost homes and retirement accounts, and financial ruin.
About three dozen of Armitage’s former clients were present at the sentencing, but only three were allowed to speak at the hearing. After the sentence was announced, many victims—and reportedly even Armitage’s probation officer—were surprised at the relatively short sentence. According to Judge Boeckman, the plea deal in the case prevented a longer sentence. While the judge does intend to order restitution in the case, it is believed that Armitage is broke and will be unable to make payments to victims.
If you believe you have lost money in a California Ponzi scheme, an experienced securities fraud lawyer with Meyer Wilson may be able to help. Our investment fraud lawyers represent harmed investors across the nation in stockbroker mediation, arbitration, and litigation, and we would be happy to review your case today.