Independence Financial Advisor Sentenced for $1 Million Fraud Against Elderly Clients
KANSAS CITY, Mo. – An Independence, Missouri, financial advisor was sentenced in federal court today for a fraud scheme in which he stole more than $1 million from two elderly clients.
Kraig Gier, 59, was sentenced by U.S. District Judge Gary A. Fenner to five years and three months in federal prison without parole.
On Jan. 31, 2020, Gier pleaded guilty to two counts of wire fraud. Gier, who operated a business called Security Planning Corporation, admitted that he stole a total of $1,087,964 from a 96-year-old client and an 84-year-old client. Through his scheme to defraud, Gier caused losses to one victim client of $879,602 and to another victim client of $208,362. According to court documents, Gier depleted the life savings of his victims, which resulted in one of his victims having to move out of the family home which she and her husband shared with her children for many years.
Gier began making fraudulent withdrawals from the various investment accounts of these clients in February 2015, and had the money deposited into either his personal checking account or his business account. This fraud scheme continued until July 2018.
Gier sometimes forged the signature of the client victims on the paperwork associated with a particular withdraw request. At other times, Gier would contain with the withdrawal paperwork a fraudulent voided check with the victim’s name on it but with his personal or business account number as the intended recipient of the requested funds.
In order to cover up his fraudulent scheme, Gier prepared false and fictitious documentation purportedly from the financial company holding the victim clients’ investment. This documentation would fraudulently represent they were making a significant profit even though he had often significantly depleted their account.
This case was prosecuted by Executive Assistant U.S. Attorney David Ketchmark. It was investigated by the FBI and the Independence, Mo., Police Department.