South Florida Man Sentenced to 38.9 Years for Precious Metals Scam of More Than $1.2 Million


TALLAHASSEE, Fla.––Attorney General Pam Bondi today announced the sentencing of Allen Franks, of Palm Beach County, in connection with charges relating to racketeering, grand theft, fraudulent transactions, money laundering and unlicensed telemarketing. Franks is sentenced to 38.9 years in Florida State prison for his involvement in the organization. 

Early this year, Franks pleaded guilty to 55 felony charges relating to an enterprise that scammed victims all over the country using various shell companies to broker transactions involving precious metals. Franks and the codefendants solicited victims through telephone and the internet, touting the investment opportunities in precious metals. The scammers instructed victims to wire funds directly to the shell companies bank accounts. Over the course of the criminal enterprise, the defendants defrauded numerous victims, mostly elderly, out of more than $1.2 million. The investigation revealed that the defendants used most of the money for personal use as well as to fund the continuation of the fraud. The money remained concealed through corporate bank accounts operated by Franks and others charged. 

The Honorable Judge Ilona Holmes sentenced Franks to 38.9 years in Florida State prison. Financial Investigator Dan Sotler of the Florida Office of Financial Regulation initiated this case and Special Agents Lawrence Masterson and Christopher Vastine, of FDLE, investigated the case. 

Attorney General Bondi’s Office of Statewide Prosecution Assistant Statewide Prosecutors Jessica Nordlund and Cynthia Honick prosecuted the case. Recently retired Assistant Statewide Prosecutor Margery Lexa, filed the charges.