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Contact: Jim Gavin
(Bloomington, IN) - Bloomington police arrested attorney Phillip Chamberlain overnight on charges of misconduct involving his clients and violations of Indiana's Securities Act. The arrest comes after a joint investigation conducted by the Bloomington Police Department and Indiana Secretary of State Todd Rokita's Prosecution Assistance Unit (PAU). Monroe County Prosecuting Attorney Chris Gaal filed the criminal charges. Chamberlain faces five felony counts and could face up to eight years in prison for each charge.
"This case represents an element of crime that is often difficult to investigate and prosecute," said Secretary Rokita. "The successful collaboration by all investigators involved sends the message that in Indiana, we will not stand by and let our citizens be victimized. We will use every resource at our disposal to protect Hoosiers from financial attack."
The charges filed indicate that a client of Chamberlain sought legal advice related to investing in rental properties. Chamberlain allegedly offered his client an alternative whereby the client would loan Chamberlain and others money for the development of a golf course and construction of a home in Lawrence County. Instead of investing the client's funds, Chamberlain is being charged with stealing a large portion. He also allegedly forged an endorsement signature on one of the client's checks and then deposited the check into his own bank account.
Specific charges against Chamberlain include two counts of Fraudulent or Deceitful Acts with the Offer, Sale or Purchase of a Security, one count of Forgery, one count of Offer or Sale of an Unregistered Security and one count of Transacting Business as an Unregistered Broker-Dealer or Agent - all Class C felonies. The charges described are merely an accusation. The defendant is presumed innocent until and unless proven guilty.
For more information on how to avoid becoming a victim of investment fraud, visit www.IndianaInvestmentWatch.com.
About the PAU
Indiana Secretary of State Todd Rokita created the Prosecution Assistance Unit (PAU) in 2004 to advance criminal investigations and to facilitate the prosecution of alleged Securities Act violations and Loan Broker Act violations. The focus of the PAU is to assist state prosecutors in an effort to work together at the courthouse and the Statehouse to root out white-collar crime. By working with law enforcement throughout the state, the office has helped to file charges in 27 high-profile investment fraud cases in Indiana, and has a 26 to 1 conviction-to-dismissal record, with more than 200 years of jail time sentenced to date.