When insurance firms launched social media initiatives, the results were rewarding.
April 04--FORT WORTH -- A Fort Worth financial planner was sentenced to 10 years in federal prison Thursday after being convicted in December on wire fraud and money-laundering charges for stealing $1 million from a client's life insurance policy.
Caleb Deason, 34, owned and operated CD Financial, a financial services firm, and was an agent of Transamerica Life Insurance Co. He sold the policy to Daniel F. Secker, a Fort Worth native who was living in Dallas, in October 2011.
Secker died unexpectedly in January 2012 at age 41, leaving a wife and three children. Transamerica investigated the death and paid the benefit to his widow, Amy Jo Secker. Or so the company thought.
Deason was convicted of changing the bank account and routing number to direct the proceeds to his own account. He also forged the beneficiary's signature on a Transamerica wire request, according to the U.S. attorney's office.
Transamerica discovered the theft after Amy Jo Secker inquired about the benefit in April 2012. According to a lawsuit filed by the insurer against Deason in state district court in Tarrant County in August 2012, the widow contacted the agency after she was dissatisfied with excuses given by Deason.
The lawsuit said that Transamerica recovered $904,536 from the account but that Deason spent $99,491. He spent some on a 2010 Range Rover, the U.S. attorney's office said in a new release Friday. The vehicle was forfeited to the Secret Service.
U.S. District Judge John McBryde said Deason was "a con man and a flimflam." Aside from the prison term, the judge ordered him to pay $99,491 in restitution, said U.S. Attorney Sarah Saldaña of the Northern District of Texas.
In another matter, Deason is suing U.S. Bank in state district court for the alleged wrongful foreclosure of his home at 2916 Park Arbor Court in Fort Worth. In 2007, Deason mortgaged $522,500 on the property, which U.S. Bank foreclosed on in December 2009, according to deed records. A trial is set for October, court records show.
According to online postings, Deason was once a member of the Panther Club, which supports the Boys & Girls Clubs of Fort Worth. He is the son of the former sheriff of Rusk County, Glen Deason of Henderson.
After graduating in 2001 from Texas Christian University, where he studied business, he worked foo Mass Mutual Insurance Co. and American Express before joining Mitchell & Moroneso Insurance in downtown Fort Worth, which "dismissed him for cause" after about three years, it said.
Sandra Baker, 817-390-7727 Twitter: @SandraBakerFWST
(c)2014 the Fort Worth Star-Telegram
Visit the Fort Worth Star-Telegram at www.star-telegram.com
Distributed by MCT Information Services