A Clemmons man already charged with defrauding people out of more than $2 million from their investment and retirement accounts is now facing allegations that he defrauded several more people, including his own father.
Russell Joseph Mutter, 50, of Curraghmore Road in Clemmons, was indicted by a Forsyth County grand jury on Monday of five additional charges — one count of financial exploitation, two counts of investment adviser fraud and two counts of obtaining property by false pretenses.
The new charges are in addition to the 36 felony counts of investment adviser fraud, financial exploitation and obtaining property by false pretenses he already faces.
One of the alleged victims is Timothy J. Mutter, 70, who is Russell Joseph Mutter’s father.
In all the cases, the alleged victims were clients of Mutter’s company, RJM Financial LLC. Previous indictments accuse Mutter of mismanaging and taking money from his clients’ accounts that resulted in total losses of $2.2 million.
In many cases, the indictments say he withdrew money from his clients’ accounts and deposited the money into brokerage and personal accounts for his own use. Mutter often took from people’s individual retirement accounts or individual investment accounts, the indictments have said. Mutter also is accused of falsifying documents to cover up his fraud.
The indictments Monday allege Mutter did the same thing with his father and several other people.
Specifically, the new indictments allege that Mutter traded index options that his father owned. The allegations cover a period between Jan. 1, 2010, and March 1, 2011.
“The Defendant conducted trades of S&P 500 Index options without regard for (Timothy) Mutter’s financial wellbeing or Mutter’s instructions and risk tolerance,” the indictments said.
What resulted was multiple trades that lost value or were rendered worthless, the indictments said. His father lost $105,325, according to the indictments.
The indictments also said that Mutter took $50,000 from his father’s individual retirement account and deposited the money into his company’s business checking account for his “personal benefit or interest.” This is alleged to have happened between Oct. 1, 2017, and Dec. 1, 2017.
Another indictment accuses Mutter of submitting distribution or withdrawal requests to take money from Louise Menna Ammes’ accounts without her knowledge or permission. He also is alleged to have gotten two checks drawn from Ammes’ accounts mailed to his post office box. Ammes lost $110,000, the indictments say.
The indictments also allege that Mutter defrauded several people — Lee M. Beall, Phillip E. Boydston, Ammes and William R. Freeman — of $130,000 by getting all of them to invest in his company, RJM Financial LLC, though Mutter never filed papers with the N.C. Secretary of State to create a limited liability company that was registered with the state.
“The defendant’s actions resulted in the sale of ownership interest in a fictitious business entity, and no profits or payouts were ever received by the targeted individuals, whom were also clients of RJM Financial,” the indictments said.
Boydston has sued Mutter in Forsyth Superior Court, alleging that Mutter misappropriated his money. Judge Stuart Albright of Forsyth Superior Court awarded a $900,000 civil judgment, saying that Boydston was entitled to relief on his claims of fraud, violation of the N.C. Investment Adviser’s Act, breach of fiduciary duty, unfair and deceptive trade practices, conversion and unjust enrichment.
Phillip K. Edwards, also one of the alleged victims in the criminal case, also sued Mutter and his company. That lawsuit is pending in Forsyth Superior Court.
Chris Beechler, Mutter’s attorney, said Tuesday that the criminal investigation closed last week. He said Mutter is relieved that the investigation is over. Beechler said now, he can start reviewing the evidence in the case. It will likely take six months before prosecutors and he start talking about resolving the case either through a trial or a plea agreement.
Mutter remains in the Forsyth County Jail under a $5 million bond. Beechler said he will not ask for Mutter’s bond to be reduced.
The N.C. Secretary of State has issued a permanent order prohibiting Mutter and his company from ever recruiting new clients or conducting business.