Ex-Agency Executive Gets 40 Years For Fraud

Well this story of Adland misdeeds is just plain sad.

Too bad its culmination comes just in time for the holidays.

Former agency owner Gary Todd Smith, 49, was sentenced to 40 years in prison last week for running a Ponzi-like scheme to finance the Fayetteville, NC agency that he and his father ran for years. The shop also had an office in Sarasota, Fl.

Basically, Smith was convicted of using investor money to pay back earlier investors in the agency.

Smith was ordered to pay $63 million in restitution to defrauded investors although it’s unlikely those payments will be made. The agency, Smith Advertising & Associates went bust in 2012 and was in the red to the tune of nearly $170 million.  And the hourly wage in prison doesn’t go very far these days.

Smith’s father, Gary Truman Smith is scheduled to be sentenced on December 19.

Very sad indeed. When you’re 49 a 40-year sentence is basically a life sentence, although Smith's lawyers indicated they plan to appeal.






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