The Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC), an NTEU-represented agency, is sounding the alarm for all federal employees about criminals who are targeting them with investment scams.
The SEC recently issued an investor alert, warning the 5 million participants in the Thrift Savings Plan (TSP) that thieves are impersonating government employees and trying to swindle TSP account holders out of their hard-earned retirement savings.
SEC filed fraud charges against four brokers from the self-proclaimed consulting group Federal Employee Benefits Counselors. According to the SEC, they misled federal employees into thinking the group was affiliated with or approved by the federal government and then convinced employees to roll over their TSP account into higher-fee, variable annuity products.
The complaint alleges that the brokers sent TSP investors incomplete or modified transaction forms that obscured that the investment was privately issued and not connected with the TSP.
The brokers sold approximately 200 variable annuities valued at approximately $40 million to federal employees, who used money rolled over from their TSP accounts. The brokers collectively raked in about $1.7 million in commissions.