News and Press Releases

Former Long Island Stockbroker Pleads Guilty In Connection With 17 Years Of Financial Fraud Schemes

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
July 30, 2013

Earlier today, at the federal courthouse in Central Islip, New York, Mark Hotton, a former Long Island stockbroker, pled guilty to conspiring to launder the illicit proceeds of almost two decades of fraud before United States District Judge Joanna Seybert.  When sentenced, Hotton faces up to 20 years in prison, forfeiture of $1.8 million and restitution of up to $5.75 million to the victims of his frauds.

According to court filings and facts presented at the plea proceeding, between January 1995 and October 2012, Hotton used funds he obtained from a series of securities fraud schemes, mail fraud schemes and other crimes to promote his continuing illegal conduct.  Throughout the conspiracy, Hotton also laundered proceeds of his frauds to pay employees cash wages, thereby avoiding federal withholding taxes intended for Social Security, Medicare and Medicaid.  The defendant also laundered funds to avoid required payments to union pension and benefit funds.

The guilty plea was announced by Loretta E. Lynch, the United States Attorney for the Eastern District of New York; Toni Weirauch, Special Agent-in-Charge, New York Field Office of the Internal Revenue Service, Criminal Investigation; and Deputy Inspector General, Daniel R. Petrole of the U.S. Department of Labor, Office of the Inspector General, Office of Labor Racketeering and Fraud Investigations.

                   “Mark Hotton was a stockbroker who earned a substantial income, but that wasn’t enough for him.  For almost two decades, he was the star of his own drama, cheating investors, partners, and his own employees to prop up the fairy tale of his success.  Today the curtain has finally fallen on the tale of fraud and deception staged by this defendant, and he stands revealed as the fraud and con man that he is.  He will now be held to account for his actions,” stated United States Attorney Lynch.  Ms. Lynch expressed her grateful appreciation to the IRS-CI and the DOL-OIG for their investigation and participation in this case.

Hotton was arrested by federal agents on Monday, October 15, 2012, on these offenses, as well as additional fraudulent conduct in the Southern District of New York arising from the financing of the proposed Broadway play “Rebecca.”  Hotton pleaded guilty to charges, arising from that conduct, yesterday in United States District Court in Manhattan. 

                  The government’s case is being prosecuted by Assistant U.S. Attorneys Burton T. Ryan, Jr. and Melanie Hendry.

This prosecution was the result of efforts by President Obama’s Financial Fraud Enforcement Task Force (FFETF) which was created in November 2009 to wage an aggressive, coordinated and proactive effort to investigate and prosecute financial crimes.  With more than 20 federal agencies, 94 U.S. attorneys’ offices, and state and local partners, it’s the broadest coalition of law enforcement, investigatory and regulatory agencies ever assembled to combat fraud.  Since its formation, the task force has made great strides in facilitating increased investigation and prosecution of financial crimes; enhancing coordination and cooperation among federal, state and local authorities; addressing discrimination in the lending and financial markets and conducting outreach to the public, victims, financial institutions and other organizations.  Over the past three fiscal years, the Justice Department has filed more than 10,000 financial fraud cases against nearly 15,000 defendants.  For more information on the task force, visit http://www.StopFraud.gov.

The Defendant:

MARK  C.  HOTTON
Age: 47
Residence: West Islip, New York

 


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