A Las Vegas lawyer, who was accused of participating in a $449 million fraud and using investors’ money to pay gambling debts, refused to cooperate with the law enforcement, leading to a shootout.
A Las Vegas Lawyer Illegally Used $4M to Pay Gambling Debt
The Securities and Exchange Commission reported that Matthew Beasley, a 49-year-old lawyer and the owner of Beasley Law Group, has been involved in a $449 million Ponzi scheme. According to the commission, the money came from over 600 investors and passed through Beasley’s bank account.
The SEC alleges that Beasley and the other participants in the scheme used investors’ money to fund expensive lifestyles. The cooperators spent the money on private jets, boats, expensive cars, and luxurious properties. Beasley also used $4 million of the money to pay back a gambling debt he owed to his bookmaker.
Beasley Refused to Cooperate with the Federal Police
In early March, FBI Special Agents went to a residence to question Beasley. The lawyer, however, was not cooperative and instead of working together with the agents, threatened them with a gun. This resulted in him getting shot instead. Here is what the official press release by the Department of Justice reads:
“When agents knocked on the glass front doors, Beasley appeared with part of his body obscured. After an agent pulled back his suit jacket to show his FBI badge, Beasley then stepped into complete view with a gun pointed at his own head. When agents instructed Beasley to drop the gun, Beasley instead pointed it at the agents in a sweeping motion — causing one or more agents to discharge their firearm and striking Beasley.”
Beasley was shot non-fatally in the chest and shoulder areas. Even after suffering the wounds, Beasley refused to leave the house, forcing the agents to call a negotiator.
The SEC lawsuit claims that the man admitted culpability in the Ponzi scheme while the situation unfolded. Beasley allegedly confirmed that Jeffrey Judd, whom the SEC believes to be the scheme’s main promoter, helped to find more investors. Beasley said that Judd has the names of all attorneys in the fraud but Beasley himself doesn’t know all of them personally.
Judd is the owner of J&J Entities. When questioned by investigators, Judd said that he worked with Beasley on a litigation financing business, which made it easier to access personal injury lawyers. Those lawyers’ clients were people with settlements with insurance companies who preferred paying to get their settlement in advance, instead of waiting for insurance payouts.
Beasley admitted that he made up some of the deals.