A Roswell financial adviser pleaded not guilty last week after being indicted in an alleged $1.3 million scam, authorities said.
Dean Harrison Grant, 54, faces 23 felony charges in Baldwin County, including two counts of financially exploiting an elder person, 10 counts of insurance fraud, 10 counts of theft and one forgery charge. Clerk of Court Mitch Longino told AJC.com that Grant pleaded not guilty to all counts during his arraignment last Monday in superior court.
He’s accused of taking hundreds of thousands of dollars under the guise that he would use it to get insurance-related investments for his clients, AJC.com previously reported. However, the Georgia Department of Insurance said he pocketed the money.
“This devious individual stole more than $1.3 million of hard-earned money from Georgians,” Insurance Commissioner John King previously said when announcing the indictment. “These victims put their trust in him, and in some cases, their livelihood. He abused that trust and left the victims out to dry.”
Grant’s alleged crimes happened in Milledgeville at the office of his wealth management firm, GFG Strategic Advisors. The firm was formed in 2008, according to state records.
Grant moved to Roswell after he was released from the Baldwin County Jail on a $750,000 bond in March 2019, King’s office said.
A cached version of the firm’s website describes the business as a “faith-based wealth management firm dedicated to helping our clients achieve a secure future for their families and businesses.” The company claimed to “counsel small to medium-size companies and affluent individuals to tailor unique financial and insurance plans that meet their specific needs.”
A February 2018 version of the website said Grant was a founder and managing partner at the firm with 26 years of experience.
The phone number listed on the cached GFG website goes to Southern Oak Advisory, a financial advisory group based outside Savannah. Nearly all of the advisers listed on the cached GFG website are also listed on the Southern Oak website as working there.
According to state business records, Southern Oak formed in March 2019, which is about three weeks after a judge denied Grant’s initial request for bond.
Grant graduated from Georgia College and State University in Milledgeville with a degree in biology and minors in chemistry and finance, the website said, before getting a master’s degree from the American College of Financial Services in Pennsylvania.
The site said he was an active member of multiple professional groups, including the National Association of Insurance and Financial Advisors. King’s office revoked Grant’s license to sell insurance in August.
Longino said Grant’s next court date has not been scheduled.
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