Lowell Money Manager Pleads Guilty to Defrauding Clients of Millions of Dollars
BOSTON – A Lowell man pleaded guilty yesterday to engaging in a scheme to defraud his clients of millions of dollars.
Steven Xigoros, 55, pleaded guilty to two counts of wire fraud, one count of aggravated identity theft, and one count of filing a false tax return. U.S. District Court Judge Nathaniel M. Gorton scheduled sentencing for Feb. 23, 2023. Xigoros was indicted by a federal grand jury in September 2021.
Between 2015 and 2021, Xigoros used his position as an accountant, tax preparer, and investment advisor to misappropriate millions of dollars from his clients. He induced clients to entrust their money to him to make various investments, to purchase securities, and to lend him money for purported business ventures. Xigoros then used those funds for his own expenses, including to make payments against his gambling debts. In order to deceive his clients about the fact that he had stolen their money, Xigoros made a series of false statements about how their money was invested and when he would repay it. In total, Xigoros defrauded his clients of more than $3.5 million, including the entire life savings of one elderly couple, who entrusted $1.3 million to him to make investments on their behalf. By failing to report the misappropriated funds as income, Xigoros also failed to pay taxes due and owing of approximately $1.16 million to the Internal Revenue Service.
While on pre-trial release, Xigoros was arrested at the Newark Liberty International Airport, boarding a flight to Greece in an attempt to flee from prosecution.
The charge of wire fraud provides for a sentence of up to 20 years in prison, three years of supervised release and a fine of up to $250,000 or twice the gross gain or loss, whichever is greater. The charge of aggravated identity theft provides for a mandatory sentence of two years in prison to be served consecutively to the sentence imposed for wire fraud, one year of supervised release and a fine of $250,000 or twice the gross gain or loss. The charge of filing false tax returns provides for a sentence of up to three years in prison, one year of supervised release and a fine of up to $250,000 or twice the gross gain or loss, whichever is greater. Sentences are imposed by a federal district court judge based upon the U.S. Sentencing Guidelines and statutes which govern the determination of a sentence in a criminal case.
United States Attorney Rachael S. Rollins; Joseph R. Bonavolonta, Special Agent in Charge of the Federal Bureau of Investigation, Boston Division; and Joleen D. Simpson, Special Agent in Charge of the Internal Revenue Service’s Criminal Investigations in Boston made the announcement. Assistant U.S. Attorneys Leslie Wright and David Holcomb of Rollins’ Securities, Financial & Cyber Fraud Unit are prosecuting the case.