On August 2021, the US Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) filed an emergency action against John Woods, the Livingston Group Asset Management Company, and investment fund Horizon Private Equity. John Woods, who was registered as a broker with Oppenheimer & Co., was discharged immediately after the emergency action. According to FINRA’s BrokerCheck, he had 4 disclosures until the SEC started its investigation on allegations that he was running a Ponzi Scheme that “raised more than $110 million from over 400 investors in 20 states.”
John Woods is being formally investigated by the SEC since August 2021 for an alleged Ponzi scheme that mainly targeted retirees. More than 400 investors fell victim to the intricate Horizon Private Equity Ponzi Scheme, which also involved the Livingston Group Asset Management Company (“Southport Capital”) and other investment advisers.
According to the SEC’s complaint,
John Woods has been running a massive Ponzi scheme for over a decade. As of the end of July 2021, investors in the Ponzi scheme were owed over $110,000,000 in principal. There are more than 400 investors, residing in at least 20 different states, who currently hold investments in the Ponzi scheme, which goes by the name Horizon Private Equity, III, LLC (“Horizon”).
Woods and other investment adviser representatives at Southport told clients that they would receive returns of 6-7% interest, guaranteed for two to three years, for non-specific investments in a fund called “Horizon Private Equity.” Woods and his cohorts at Southport generally told investors that Horizon would earn a return by investing their money in, for example, government bonds, stocks, or small real estate projects; investors were not told that their money would or could be used to pay returns to earlier investors.
Defendant Southport, which is registered with the SEC as Livingston Group Asset Management Company, Inc., has more than $824,000,000 in client assets under management. As the President and majority owner of the firm, Woods has extensively used Southport’s offices and employees to carry out his Ponzi scheme.
If you invested with John Woods or any other adviser who recommended Horizon Private Equity, Contact Peiffer Wolf for a FREE CONSULTATION by calling 585-310-5140 or by filling out a Contact Form on this website.
To review John Woods’s BrokerCheck report, click here:
*BrokerCheck is run by the Financial Industry Regulatory Authority, Inc. (FINRA)
“A Ponzi scheme is an investment fraud that pays existing investors with funds collected from new investors. Ponzi scheme organizers often promise to invest your money and generate high returns with little or no risk. But in many Ponzi schemes, the fraudsters do not invest the money. Instead, they use it to pay those who invested earlier and may keep some for themselves.
With little or no legitimate earnings, Ponzi schemes require a constant flow of new money to survive. When it becomes hard to recruit new investors, or when large numbers of existing investors cash out, these schemes tend to collapse.” (SEC – Investor.gov)
Because many retirees seek to invest their life’s savings, they become targets for investment advisers who may not follow their legal obligation and regulatory obligation to recommend only suitable investments that are appropriate for their individual clients.
To the extent that any of these duties are breached, the customer may be entitled to a recovery of his or her investment losses. Now, the securities law firm of Peiffer Wolf Carr Kane & Conway has begun investigating any and all brokers and advisors who recommended Horizon Private Equity. If you invested with John Woods or any other adviser who recommended Horizon Private Equity, Contact Peiffer Wolf for a FREE CONSULTATION by calling 585-310-5140 or by filling out a Contact Form on this website.
Information about this broker was obtained from FINRA’s BrokerCheck on September 10, 2021. You should always review the broker’s BrokerCheck report for updated information. If you believe some of the content on this page does not reflect the report, contact us.
The securities law firm of Peiffer Wolf Carr Kane & Conway has begun investigating any and all brokers and advisors who recommended Horizon Private Equity. If you invested with John Woods or any other adviser who recommended Horizon Private Equity, Contact Peiffer Wolf today by filling out a Contact Form on our website or by calling 585-310-5140 to schedule a FREE Case Evaluation.