Dozens of Iowa cities defrauded by Newport Beach investment adviser Steven D. Wymer said Tuesday that they won a big victory when a federal appeals court agreed that $44 million in a Colorado bank belonged to them.
Wymer pleaded guilty in September to defrauding cities in Iowa and California of what prosecutors said was $105 million. He is to be sentenced in Los Angeles next week. Wymer has admitted not only taking clients' money for personal use, but also to shifting money from one client to another to hide his investment losses.
Meanwhile, his clients have been feuding over what remains of the money. The Iowa Trust, which invested the cities' money through Wymer, was the biggest loser: It was out $75 million when the fraud was discovered in late 1991.
Of that, $44 million landed at Jefferson Bank & Trust in Lakewood, Colo., in what the Iowa attorney general says was "a complicated set of financial transactions engineered" by Wymer.