Securities broker allegedly used investments for personal use, suit claims

Kelly Holleran Aug. 23, 2011, 2:11am

The administrator of an estate alleges the deceased woman's financial advisor utilized investment money for personal use.

David E. Renois filed a lawsuit July 19 in St. Clair County Circuit Court against Victoria McGee-Harris, MetLife Insurance Company and Tower Square Securities.

In his complaint, David Renois claims Constance Renois purchased securities from McGee-Harris from August of 2006 until McGee-Harris' license was suspended on Jan. 8, 2010.

Constance Renois trusted McGee-Harris to invest her money in securities and to broker transactions for her, according to the complaint. However, McGee-Harris instead allegedly utilized the money for her own benefit and to pay other investors, the suit states.

"From and during the periods stated herein, Victoria McGee-Harris engaged in a scheme to defraud Constance A. Renois and induced Constance A. Renois to pay funds over to Metro East Insurance Group in excess of $130,000 for various purported investment products which she did not purchase for the benefit of Constance A. Renois," the complaint says.

McGee-Harris provided Constance Renois with false statements, furthering Constance Renois's belief that her money was being invested in securities as she had requested, according to the complaint.

At the time of the alleged scheme, McGee-Harris was acting as an agent on behalf of Tower Square Securities, which owned MetLife Insurance Company, David Renois claims.

In his complaint, David Renois wants the court to order McGee-Harris and the other defendants to pay all funds McGee-Harris wrongfully obtained from Constance Renois, plus punitive damages, attorney's fees, costs and other relief the court deems just.

Robert L. Jennings of Jennings, Jacknewitz and Schrader in Belleville will be representing him.

St. Clair County Circuit Court case number: 11-L-411.

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