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White-collar crime: A family affair

Jason Galanis is the son of John Galanis, a father who provided him with a life of luxury. On his 16th birthday, Jason received a $100,000 Ferrari from his father while celebrating in his family’s $50 million mansion.

The elder Galanis is also known as one of the top 10 biggest white-collar criminals in America. The patriarch left a trail of state and federal criminal indictments dating back to the early 1970’s. He is most famous for bilking the head of the New York Stock Exchange and celebrities, including Eddie Murphy, in a tax-shelter scheme.

While no one would consider the elder Galanis a role model, Jason still decided to follow in dad’s footsteps.

A U.S. District Judge sentenced Galanis to more than 14 years in prison for a bond-issuing scam targeting a South Dakota Sioux tribe. The Ponzi-style plot involved selling poor Native Americans worthless bonds and defrauding pension funds in multiple states out of $40 million.

Nine million of the “proceeds” went towards expenses for Jason’s Bel Air mansion, a Manhattan apartment, and other assorted “sundries.” He considered it preemptive compensation for his “help.”

Galanis is already serving 11 years for swindling investors out of $20 million while with Genova Financial Group Ltd., a financial services firm based in Bermuda. Part of the plea involved Jason’s admission that he helped an investment advisor steal $18 million from clients through an entity called Fund.com.

Both the Genova and Fund.com scams served as a family affair. John Galanis was charged as well while Jason’s two other brothers were indicted in the Genova swindle.

Like father, like sons.

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Darryl A. Goldberg
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