Wednesday, July 11, 2012

Russell R. Wasendorf Sr Suicide Attempt after $220m of clients' cash goes missing

The CEO of a brokerage group tried to commit suicide after it was revealed that $220 million of customer funds is missing.

A regulatory group ordered accounts to be frozen at Iowa-based brokerage Peregrine Financial Group late on Monday, following what the company said was a suicide attempt by its founder and chairman Russell R. Wasendorf Sr.

The National Futures Association said it received information that PFG may have falsified bank records, and that the company only had about $5 million of $225 million it had claimed to have in a deposit account.

The association, an industry group that serves as a self-regulatory role, said PFG could not demonstrate that it meets capital requirements and rules requiring it to segregate customer funds.

Though no one at the company would respond to comments, in a statement to its clients, they said its founder and chairman attempted suicide earlier on Monday, though it provided no information on his condition.

The company said the attempt prompted investigation of 'some accounting irregularities'. Read More