Chicago investment advisor charged with stealing $683K from clients, including 2 elderly men with dementia

A Chicago investment advisor has been charged with stealing $683,000 from three clients, including two elderly men suffering from dementia.

David S. Wells, 32, is accused of falsely telling the clients he would invest their money in publicly traded companies, according to a federal indictment.

The clients sent him checks made payable to "Wayne and Stark," which Wells claimed was a publicly traded company, the indictment states. Wayne and Stark was actually a shell company set up and controlled by Wells, the indictment charges.

Wells used the clients’ funds for personal use, including rent and unauthorized trading in "high-risk options contracts," according to the indictment. Wells lost or spent all of the clients’ fund, the indictment states.


The alleged fraud occurred in 2020 and 2021

The indictment comes more than four months after the Securities and Exchange Commission filed its own charges against Wells over his handling of the same accounts.

In its complaint, the SEC said Wells told the three clients to buy cashiers’ checks made out to Wayne and Stark. Wells lost most of the money through risky options trading, the SEC said.