Lanier gets 8 years for embezzlement - WALB.com, Albany News, Weather, Sports

Lanier gets 8 years for embezzlement

Posted: Updated:
  • More WALB News10 HeadlinesMore News HeadlinesMore>>

  • Albany cheerleading team could be on reality show

    Albany cheerleading team could be on reality show

    Wednesday, July 30 2014 11:42 PM EDT2014-07-31 03:42:06 GMT
    Dr. Latonya Peterson, Assistant CoachDr. Latonya Peterson, Assistant Coach
    An Albany cheerleading team could be featured on a reality show. More than 50 girls tried out to join the two time national champion Albany Elite “Tiger Paws.”More >>
    An Albany cheerleading team could be featured on a reality show. More than 50 girls tried out to join the two time national champion Albany Elite “Tiger Paws.”More >>
  • Veterans to learn about benefits at American Legion event

    Veterans to learn about benefits at American Legion event

    Wednesday, July 30 2014 11:34 PM EDT2014-07-31 03:34:18 GMT
    William D. Simmons, American Legion 2nd District CommanderWilliam D. Simmons, American Legion 2nd District Commander
    American Legion leaders are preparing for an event to help South Georgia veterans learn more about the benefits they earned. More >>
    American Legion leaders are preparing for an event to help South Georgia veterans learn more about the benefits they earned. More >>
  • MCLB hosts education summit

    MCLB hosts education summit

    Wednesday, July 30 2014 11:26 PM EDT2014-07-31 03:26:53 GMT
    Latreesa Perryman, MCLB School Liaison Latreesa Perryman, MCLB School Liaison
    Military families got to ask questions about the best education choices for their children .Superintendents and other officials from public, private, home school, and online institutions in Dougherty, Lee, and Worth Counties attended Wednesday night’s Military Child Education Summit at the Marine Corps Logistics Base.More >>
    Military families got to ask questions about the best education choices for their children .Superintendents and other officials from public, private, home school, and online institutions in Dougherty, Lee, and Worth Counties attended Wednesday night’s Military Child Education Summit at the Marine Corps Logistics Base.More >>

from the U.S. Attorney's Office

TALLAHASSEE, FL  -  James Ryan Lanier, 33, was sentenced to 106 months in federal prison for embezzling more than $800,000 from Merrill Lynch clients.   The sentence was announced by Pamela C. Marsh, United States Attorney for the Northern District of Florida.

Between 2008 and 2010, Lanier used his position as a financial advisor for Merrill Lynch in Tallahassee to funnel approximately $887,931 in client funds to his own personal bank accounts. 

Lanier was able to induce Merrill Lynch Client Associates to wire transfer client funds to bank accounts Lanier controlled by using forged client authorization letters and falsely claiming that his clients had verbally approved the transfers. 

To facilitate the scheme, Lanier purposely sought assistance from Merrill Lynch employees who were unfamiliar with Lanier's clients.  Lanier used the embezzled client funds to make loan payments, and to purchase vehicles, an interest in a cellular telecommunications business, and a condominium in Albany, Georgia.

Last November, Lanier pled guilty to 13 counts of wire fraud, three counts of mail fraud, four counts of money laundering, and two counts of aggravated identity theft in connection with the embezzlement.

In addition to the prison sentence, Lanier was ordered to pay $887,931 in restitution to Merrill Lynch.

U.S. Attorney Marsh commended the work of the Federal Bureau of Investigation, the Internal Revenue Service – Criminal Investigations, and the United States Marshal's Service, whose joint investigation led to the arrest in this case. 

Ms. Marsh stated, "This office will vigorously prosecute financial advisors and consultants who victimize and swindle their own clients. This sentence should serve as a stark warning to those who may be tempted to line their own pockets by betraying their clients' trust."

The case was prosecuted by Assistant U.S. Attorney Jason Coody.