Securities Broker Pleads Guilty In Fraud Scheme
PITTSBURGH, Pa. - A resident of Beaver, Pa., pleaded guilty in federal court to a charge of mail fraud, United States Attorney David J. Hickton announced today.
Daniel M. Bull, 28, pleaded guilty to one count before United States District Judge David S. Cercone.
In connection with the guilty plea, the court was advised that from November 2009 to February 2011, when he worked successively at three securities firms, Bull obtained more than $756,000 from 13 investors. Instead of purchasing securities or holding their money in escrow for safekeeping as promised, Bull diverted these funds to his venture capital company and to pay personal expenses. Some investors were repaid in part with other investors' funds, but the victims suffered a net loss of more than $481,000.
Judge Cercone scheduled sentencing for Dec. 1, 2011, at 11:00 a.m. The law provides for a total sentence of 20 years in prison, a fine of $250,000, 3 years supervised release and a $100 special assessment. Under the Federal Sentencing Guidelines, the actual sentence imposed is based upon the seriousness of the offense and the criminal history, if any, of the defendant.
Pending sentencing, the court released the defendant on bond.
Assistant United States Attorney Leo M. Dillon is prosecuting this case on behalf of the government.
The United States Postal Inspection Service and the Pennsylvania Securities Commission conducted the investigation that led to the prosecution of Bull.