Former Army financial Adviser Guilty Of Scamming Gold Star families

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Caz Craffy, 41, who also goes by “Carz Craffey,” admitted to taking advantage of his role to swindle deceased troops’ grieving loved ones out of millions, according to a release from the U.S. Attorney’s Office for the District of New Jersey.

Instead of simply advising the families, Craffy, who also was employed with two different financial investment firms, used his position to identify families and encouraged them to invest in accounts with the firms. He misled them into thinking that the money management was part of the Army’s benefits and was service-approved, according to the Justice Department.

From May 2018 to November 2022, Craffy invested more than $9.9 million of the families’ money in accounts he managed, executing trades — sometimes without the families’ permission — and earning high commissions.

During that time, the Gold Star families’ accounts lost more than $3.7 million while Craffy, 41, earned $1.4 million in commissions from them.

As an employment requirement, Craffy was prohibited from offering personal opinions on beneficiaries’ benefits decisions, and he was not allowed to participate in government matters in which he had outside financial interests.

Justice Department officials said the Colts Neck, New Jersey, resident preyed on families when they were at their most vulnerable.

“Nothing can undo the enormous loss that Gold Star families have suffered, but the Justice Department is committed to doing everything in our power to protect them from further harm,” Attorney General Merrick Garland said Tuesday in a statement.

“These Gold Star families have laid the dearest sacrifice on the altar of freedom. And they deserve our utmost respect and compassion, as well as some small measure of financial security from a grateful nation,” said U.S. Attorney Philip Sellinger. “Caz Craffy now faces the prospect of years in prison for ripping off these families to line his own pocket.”

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In a particularly appalling offense, Craffy misappropriated $50,000 from the account of a minor whose parent died on active duty, the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission previously said in a release.

A plea agreement outlines a prison term of roughly eight to 10 years, though a sentencing scheduled for August will determine how much time he officially receives, as well as how much money he is ordered to pay.

The SEC also has a pending civil complaint against Craffy based on the same and additional conduct, the Justice Department release noted.

“We take these matters very seriously and will address this issue in accordance with Army regulations and the Uniform Code of Military Justice to ensure due process,” Army Reserve spokesperson Lt. Col. Addie Leonhardt told Military Times in a statement. “However, the Privacy Act precludes the Army Reserve from discussing a specific soldier’s case in further detail.”



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