A judge in Texas has sentenced a man to three life sentences—plus another 30 years—after he pleaded guilty back in August for defrauding senior citizens out of millions of dollars.
William Neil Gallagher, the self-proclaimed "Money Doctor," was sentenced Monday after being charged with running a Ponzi scheme in Hurst, Texas: securing the execution of a document by deception for an amount greater than $200,000; theft of property more than $300,000 and misapplication of fiduciary property or property of financial institution of more than $300,000.
The 80-year-old Gallagher is the founder Gallagher Financial Group. CBSnews.com reported that the company "advertised on Christian radio with the tagline, 'See you in church on Sunday.'" The report also said that Gallagher promoted his investment business in books like Jesus Christ, Money Master and on Christian radio broadcasts.
More than a dozen senior victims testified during a three-hour court hearing, with individuals losing anywhere from $50,000 to $600,000 that they had invested in Gallagher's company. CBS News reported that "some had to sell their homes, borrow money from their children or take part-time jobs to supplement their social security benefits."
"'Doc' Gallagher is one of the worst offenders I have seen," Chief of the Tarrant County District Attorney's Elder Financial Fraud team Lori Varnell said. "He ruthlessly stole from his clients who trusted him for almost a decade. He amassed 32 million in loss to all of his clients and exploited many elder individuals. He worked his way around churches, preying on people who believed he was a Christian."
In 2020, he pleaded guilty to similar charges in Dallas County and was sentenced to 25 years in prison.
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