Next Avenue: A shocking number of veterans are getting scammed out of their assets—here are some of the common frauds

by | Mar 22, 2023 | Stock Market

This article is reprinted by permission from As aging World War II veteran Johnnie Ray Toland started showing signs of Alzheimer’s, his family began searching for an assisted living home to care for him. Staff members at one home introduced the family to Tammi Palasini. Palasini, who would later be sentenced to 20 years behind bars for various crimes, including fraud, convinced the Toland family to give her control of $340,000 of their funds.

Aid and assistance scam In what is known as an “aid and assistance scam,” Palasini falsely promised the Toland family that she would help diversify their father’s assets to get beneath the threshold to qualify for VA benefits and earn a return on their investment. It wasn’t until after Toland’s death three years later that the family learned Palasini was a scam artist who had victimized them and their father. On the same day as Toland’s funeral, a postal inspector contacted the victim’s son, Jimmy, and told him of Palasini’s fraudulent schemes, revealing that on the same day they gave Palasini control of the $340,000, she used their money to purchase a race car and advertising for her son. More: Don’t let thieves clean you out with one of these common bank scamsMillions and millions go missing Palasini scammed 78 veterans out of more than $2 million in assets through various means, including her fraudulent investment company, “Veterans’ Pension Planners of America.” Sadly, scam artists commonly single out older veterans like Toland. About 2.4 million Americans filed fraud complaints with the Federal Trade Commission last year, reporting …

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