Litigation Release No. 21518 / May 6, 2010

United States v. Stephen Clifford, No. 09-CR-10387-NG (D. Mass.).

SEC v. Stephen F. Clifford d/b/a Clifford Financial Assocs., No. 08-CV-11023-RGS (D. Mass.).

Former Investment Adviser Pleads Guilty To Criminal Charges

The Commission announced today that, on May 4, 2010, Stephen F. Clifford, formerly an investment adviser in Plymouth, Massachusetts, pled guilty to one count of willfully violating Sections 206 and 217 of the Investment Advisers Act of 1940, one count of wire fraud, one count of mail fraud, and three counts of subscribing to false tax returns.

The Commission filed a civil injunctive action against Clifford on June 17, 2008. On that date, the Commission also sought and obtained a temporary restraining order and asset freeze. The Commission's action, which remains pending, alleges that, between at least July 2004 and June 2008, while acting as an investment adviser, Clifford defrauded investors of at least $2.9 million and misappropriated investor funds for his personal use. The United States Attorney's Office for the District of Massachusetts filed a criminal Information on December 16, 2009, making substantially similar factual allegations against Clifford.

The Commission acknowledges the assistance and cooperation of the Massachusetts Securities Division, the United States Postal Inspection Service, and the United States Attorney's Office for the District of Massachusetts.

For additional information, see Litigation Release Nos. 20622 (June 18, 2008) and 21343 (December 18, 2009).


Last modified: 5/06/2010