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    Tampa man accused of theft of 13 Florida investors' funds

    By Times staff writer
    © St. Petersburg Times
    published September 9, 2002

    TAMPA -- The former owner of a financial services company is facing criminal charges after being accused of bilking investors out of more than $1-million and using the money for his personal use, state law enforcement officials said.

    Charles Francis Morgan, 57, was charged with 32 counts of sale of unregistered securities, 13 counts of grand theft and one count of securities fraud. Morgan, who ran Morgan Financial Services at 4100 W Kennedy Blvd. in Tampa, was arrested Friday and his bail was set at more than $1.1-million.

    Morgan took money from 13 investors in Hillsborough, Pinellas and Clay counties between 1997 and 2000, according to the Florida Department of Law Enforcement. Instead of investing his clients' money, Morgan used it to buy stock in his name and pay for vacations and other expenses, officials said.

    Morgan was arrested at his home at 9032 Nautilus Circle in Tampa.

    In 2001, the Securities and Exchange Commission accused Morgan of misappropriating more than $1.7-million from investors, most of them elderly, from 1991 to 2000. The SEC said Morgan used money without investor knowledge to give loans to a Tampa company that went bankrupt. Morgan was a former officer of that company and its largest stockholder.

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