Hauke receiver files suit to recover $600k from Arizona investor

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The receiver representing investors in the Ponzi scheme run by convicted money manager Keenan Hauke has sued to recover nearly $600,000 in improper payments made to an Arizona investment fund.

And he says he has a handful more investors to pursue.

Carmel attorney William Wendling Jr. filed suit in federal court in Indianapolis against Larcher Investments LP and one of its managers, David Larcher. Larcher is executive vice president of Vestar Development, a Phoenix-based real estate developer.

The lawsuit claims that Larcher deposited about $2 million into Hauke’s Fishers-based hedge fund, Samex Capital Partners LLC, through a series of payments and reinvested profits in 2002, 2004 and 2005.

Then, in 2008, Hauke wired Larcher nearly $2.6 million, describing the extra money as a gain on Larcher’s investments.

But Samex had not been generating legitimate investment returns since a real estate investment had gone sour in April 2004. Instead, Hauke was paying off earlier investors with money he raised from later investors.

As a result, Wendling claims, Larcher received $593,040 that actually came out of the pockets of other investors.

“I want this to be crystal clear: the people we’re asking money back from did nothing wrong,” Wendling said. But, he added, “whatever profits they received were not really profits.”

Larcher did not return a phone call seeking comment on the lawsuit.

Wendling was appointed receiver of Samex Capital in June but could not proceed with his work until the conclusion of investigations by the Indiana Secretary of State’s Securities Division and the FBI.

Hauke pleaded guilty to fraud in December and in March was sentenced to 10 years in prison. He also was ordered to make restitution of $7.1 million, the amount the court determined he swindled from 67 investors.

Wendling said he is still compiling the list of investors that, like Larcher, received payments that were higher than the amounts they originally invested and any legitimate gains their money generated before Hauke’s fraud began.

He expects to have discussions with “a handful” of other investors and, if necessary, also file lawsuits against them. In all, Wendling estimated, there are likely $1 million to $2 million in excess payouts that could possibly be recovered.

Prior to the fraud investigation, Hauke was a high-profile wealth manager who made regular appearances on CNBC, Fox Business Network, Bloomberg Television and Bloomberg Radio. He also wrote an investing column in IBJ.

This article original ran in the April 11, 2012, IBJ Daily. The Indianapolis Business Journal is a sister publication of Indiana Lawyer.


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  1. This is ridiculous. Most JDs not practicing law don't know squat to justify calling themselves a lawyer. Maybe they should try visiting the inside of a courtroom before they go around calling themselves lawyers. This kind of promotional BS just increases the volume of people with JDs that are underqualified thereby dragging all the rest of us down likewise.

  2. I think it is safe to say that those Hoosier's with the most confidence in the Indiana judicial system are those Hoosier's who have never had the displeasure of dealing with the Hoosier court system.

  3. I have an open CHINS case I failed a urine screen I have since got clean completed IOP classes now in after care passed home inspection my x sister in law has my children I still don't even have unsupervised when I have been clean for over 4 months my x sister wants to keep the lids for good n has my case working with her I just discovered n have proof that at one of my hearing dcs case worker stated in court to the judge that a screen was dirty which caused me not to have unsupervised this was at the beginning two weeks after my initial screen I thought the weed could have still been in my system was upset because they were suppose to check levels n see if it was going down since this was only a few weeks after initial instead they said dirty I recently requested all of my screens from redwood because I take prescriptions that will show up n I was having my doctor look at levels to verify that matched what I was prescripted because dcs case worker accused me of abuseing when I got my screens I found out that screen I took that dcs case worker stated in court to judge that caused me to not get granted unsupervised was actually negative what can I do about this this is a serious issue saying a parent failed a screen in court to judge when they didn't please advise

  4. I have a degree at law, recent MS in regulatory studies. Licensed in KS, admitted b4 S& 7th circuit, but not to Indiana bar due to political correctness. Blacklisted, nearly unemployable due to hostile state action. Big Idea: Headwinds can overcome, esp for those not within the contours of the bell curve, the Lego Movie happiness set forth above. That said, even without the blacklisting for holding ideas unacceptable to the Glorious State, I think the idea presented above that a law degree open many vistas other than being a galley slave to elitist lawyers is pretty much laughable. (Did the law professors of Indiana pay for this to be published?)

  5. Joe, you might want to do some reading on the fate of Hoosier whistleblowers before you get your expectations raised up.