The St. Louis Rams football team is suing a former stockbroker and alleged Ponzi-schemer, in addition to the ticket brokerage he started, for tens of thousands of dollars in unpaid tickets.
Stockbroker Joshua Gould, formerly of Woodbury Financial Services, allegedly owes the Rams nearly $78,000 (not including interest) for tickets, and The Sports Nook, a St. Louis-based ticket brokerage he allegedly started with ill-gotten profits, owes $50,000 (again, not including interest) for tickets.
Separately, Gould and a business associate named David Rubin, owner of two St. Louis offices of Coral Mortgage Bankers Corp., were indicted by federal prosecutors earlier this month for allegedly bilking investment clients out of millions of dollars over a four-year period, beginning in the spring of 2007. Gould allegedly used the proceeds from what amounted to a Ponzi scheme to finance a lavish lifestyle, including numerous trips to local strip clubs and to start businesses, including The Sports Nook. The company’s Web site remains in operation.
The Rams’ lawsuit, recently filed in St. Louis County Circuit Court, has a chance of being settled relatively quickly because Gould is reportedly trying to cooperate and has already begun liquidating assets to repay victims and creditors. As such, his attorney, Al Watkins, told the St. Louis Post-Dispatch the lawsuit is a “friendly piece of litigation.”
In fact, Watkins and the Rams’ attorney, Christopher Risler, list the same offices as their address although they are not part of the same firm.
“[Mr. Gould] is stepping up to the plate and doing what he needs to do,” Watkins told the Post-Dispatch.
U.S. Attorney Richard Callahan, of the Eastern Missouri U.S. Attorney’s Office, painted a very unflattering portrait of Gould in the separate indictment. Gould and Rubin allegedly embezzled $1.5 million from one investor solicited by Rubin, and Gould allegedly embezzled a total of $3.5 million from several other investors.
Rubin allegedly used some of the illegal proceeds to pay a separate, out-of-court sex discrimination lawsuit, while Rubin used some of the money on car payments, mortgage payments, an extensive renovation of his home, jewelry and the undisclosed “substantial expenses” from the visits to strip clubs.
The money allegedly stolen included life savings and finances earmarked for charitable causes.
The federal grand jury indictments include felony counts of wire fraud and mail fraud. The charges carry possible prison sentences of up to 20 years and fines, in addition to asset forfeitures.