Livestock News

Fake veterinarian admits to aiding $4.7M cattle fraud scheme

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A Missouri man has admitted he posed as a veterinarian in a $4.7 million cattle fraud scheme that spanned across 21 states. Secretary of State Jay Ashcroft’s Securities Division issued a consent order with Robert D. Hawkins, who consents to findings that he aided Cameron J. Hager in allegedly soliciting over 90 investors in the scheme.

Cameron J. Hager, 42, of Clinton, was charged in a nine-count indictment returned under seal by a federal grand jury in Kansas City. The federal indictment alleges that Hager, who operated 5A Holdings, LLC, engaged in the fraud scheme from July 17, 2015, to March 28, 2018. Hager allegedly induced victims to invest in a “cattle fund” that was used to purchase herds of cattle to be sold later at a substantial profit, although he never actually purchased or intended to purchase any cattle.

According to the indictment, Hager told victim investors that he would arrange to purchase herds of cattle from farmers or ranchers who had reasons to sell their herds because of financial distress and inability to maintain their herds. Hager and his organization, he allegedly claimed, evaluated the cattle, including having the cattle examined by a “seasoned veterinarian,” and determined that a predictable profit could be realized by maintaining and feeding the cattle until an optimum time for marketing the cattle. Hager allegedly claimed that 5A Holdings realized net returns greater than 20 percent on investments in herds of cattle during 2015, 2016, and 2017.

The division’s findings allege that Hawkins posed as a veterinarian for Hager’s company, 5A Holdings LLC, to show investors cattle that he claimed were owned by 5A.

Per the order, Hawkins will pay $20,000 to the Investor Education and Protection Fund, with $10,000 suspended for 10 years so long he doesn’t violate the Missouri Securities Act or the terms of the order. He is restrained from selling securities and barred from registering as an investment agent in Missouri. Hawkins will also cooperate with the division in any pending proceedings in this matter.

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