3 men charged with defrauding Clancy, others Trio pleaded innocent to 35 counts in Md. case

August 14, 1998|By Jamie Stiehm | Jamie Stiehm,SUN STAFF

Three former coin dealers accused of swindling author Tom Clancy and other investors out of $3.5 million have been indicted by a grand jury on 35 counts of securities fraud and conspiracy, Maryland Attorney General J. Joseph Curran Jr. announced yesterday.

Richard Scott, 52, and Jeffrey Goodman, 45, both of Alexandria, Va., and Edward "Butch" Pereira, 33, of North Beach are accused of defrauding 25 investors.

They pleaded not guilty at their arraignments yesterday in Prince George's Circuit Court, where their trial will take place, said Frank Mann, special assistant to Curran. If convicted, each could be sentenced to more than 100 years in prison.

Scott and his partners ran Goldie's Coin and Stamp Center in a strip mall near Andrews Air Force Base. The business closed in late 1995 during a four-year probe of its activities.

"This was more than just a bad investment," Curran said in a statement. "It was a deplorable scam that offered customers nothing more than dishonesty and mismanagement, costing them millions of dollars."

Curran said it was the largest fraud investigation launched by the state in the past 12 years.

Court documents allege that large sums of the investors' money were deposited in bank accounts that Scott and his partners used to pay off credit cards, buy electronic equipment, and finance gambling junkets to Atlantic City and Las Vegas.

Some of the funds were invested in a highly speculative investment account, according to the court documents.

Scott, who met Clancy at an Orioles baseball game, apparently used the best-selling author's name to attract other investors.

"What is most troublesome to the Clancys is not even so much their financial loss, but that their names were used to promote these despicable activities," said Ellyn L. Brown, Clancy's attorney.

Pub Date: 8/14/98

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