A barred broker who served time in jail for perpetrating a massive investment fraud in upstate New York was charged on Monday with swindling more than $270,000 from multiple victims, including his 88-year-old mother, according to the New York Attorney General.
Prosecutors accused Franklin Marone of Queens, New York, of stealing over $100,000 in cash from his mother and on four separate occasions selling thousands of her valuables at a local pawnshop. He also impersonated her in a series of recorded phone calls with a financial institution in an attempt to steal over $50,000 from her account, prosecutors claimed.
The alleged misconduct was uncovered when Marone began missing court-ordered restitution payments stemming from a $5.4 million stock fraud scheme he orchestrated in a Catskill mountain ski resort. He was sentenced to six to 18 years in state prison and ordered to pay over $4.6 million in restitution to his victims in June 2004, according to the prosecutor's office.
When Marone failed to make timely restitution payments and swore in affidavits that he had no assets or income, prosecutors launched an investigation that led to the discovery of his latest alleged crime.
In addition to misappropriating money from his elderly mother, Marone allegedly stole over $45,000 from an ex-girlfriend and a family friend. He purportedly used the stolen money to pay for upgrades to his Jeep Wrangler, multiple Caribbean cruises, and thousands of dollars in premium gym memberships for himself and his current girlfriend and their families. The thefts occurred between January 2014 and September 2017, the prosecutor claimed.
Marone, who is being held in Greene County jail, could not be made immediately available for comment.
Marone was barred by the SEC in September 2004, according to BrokerCheck records. He was registered with Carlin Equities Corp., a now defunct brokerage firm in New York, when he orchestrated the ski resort stock scam, which took place between November 1998 and January 2004. He was registered with Merrill Lynch from November 1991 to January 1997.
Marone was indicted in both Greene County and Queens County. In Greene County, he was charged with two counts of offering a false instrument for filing and two counts of perjury. In Queens County, he was charged with two counts of grand larceny, two counts of identity theft, one count of scheming to defraud and one count of criminal impersonation.
"As we allege, the defendant in this case brazenly stole from those closest to him, showing no remorse for his prior victims and completely disregarding the law," Attorney General Eric Schneiderman said in a statement.
If convicted, Marone faces up to 20 years in state prison.
In addition to the two pending indictments in Greene and Queens Counties, Marone is scheduled to appear in Greene County Court for a hearing related to his $1.2 million in outstanding court-ordered restitution from his prior conviction.