The British Columbia Securities Commission alleges that a financial adviser who was once licensed to sell life insurance swindled over $1-million from her clients, only to gamble much of it away.
From January, 2009 to March, 2010, B.C. resident Lynne Rae Nickford (who also uses her maiden name, Zlotnik) raised about $2-million, mostly from women, through her company LZ Wealth management. During this same period, about $1.3-million of the money was transferred to Ms. Nickford’s personal account.
From there, according to the BCSC, the money was used “to pay for her personal expenses, including food, clothing and rent payments, and Ms. Nickford “also withdrew a total of approximately $973,000 in cash from her personal account, using some or all of it, to gamble at casinos in the Vancouver area.”
If you read The Globe religiously, Ms. Nickford‘s maiden name should sound familiar. In December, 2010, she was a key figure in a series by reporters Tara Perkins and Grant Robertson about loopholes and a lack of oversight in Canada’s insurance industry.
When that story was written, Ms. Nickford had simply lost her insurance licence. Now she’s being accused of fraud.
In total, she raised $2-million from 13 investors, and about $1.4-million of that came from issuing promissory notes, the BCSC alleges. To gather these funds, Ms. Nickford marketed herself as someone who cared about “promoting financial literacy and educating women on managing their finances,” according to the BCSC.
Her hearing is scheduled for September 18.