Wymer Strikes Deal to Settle Bilking Cases : Court: Newport Beach money manager charged with getting $100 million from dozens of local governments reportedly agrees to a deal.

From Associated Press

A money manager charged with bilking more than $100 million from dozens of local governments has struck a deal to settle the federal criminal and civil cases against him, sources said Friday.

The FBI, postal investigators, prosecutors and securities regulators scheduled a news conference for Tuesday at the federal court house in Los Angeles to announce settlement of the case against Steven D. Wymer.

Wymer, of Newport Beach, once was considered a financial wizard by small agencies who trusted him to invest their excess cash. He is accused of falsely reporting high returns to his clients and shifting money among their accounts in a financial shell game.

One of Wymer's attorneys, James D. Riddet, said earlier this month that he was close to an agreement that would include a guilty plea and prison time for Wymer.

A federal source, speaking on condition of anonymity, said the settlement also includes a large payment by Wymer.

Wymer, who is free on bail, headed Irvine-based International Treasury Management. ITM managed $1.2 billion in investments for 65 small cities and state agencies, primarily in California, Iowa and Colorado.

Wymer had pleaded innocent to 30 counts of securities fraud, mail fraud, money laundering, obstruction of justice and making false statements.

Under federal sentencing guidelines, a 15- to 20-year prison sentence would have been likely, said Jean Kawahara, a federal prosecutor on the case.

Kawahara declined to discuss terms of the settlement.

The case was broken by the Securities and Exchange Commission, which initially detected $100 million in trading losses in the accounts of the agencies. Later, as much as $170 million was discovered to be missing, though regulators believe that they have located some of the funds.

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