A Maple Grove investment adviser is ready to accept years in prison and financial ruin for stealing more than $2.25 million from nearly two dozen clients, then using the money to feed his lavish lifestyle.
Isaiah L. Goodman, 33, pleaded guilty Wednesday in U.S. District Court in Minneapolis to mail fraud in connection with the alleged scheme that stretched for roughly three years until November.
Goodman's plea agreement says that federal sentencing guidelines suggest prison time ranging from 5 ¼ to slightly more than eight years.
However, the prosecution and defense can argue at sentencing on June 29 for a longer or shorter term, and Judge Susan Nelson can adjust the prison time at her discretion.
The agreement also calls for Goodman to make full restitution for the $2,250,123 he stole from investors, and to forfeit to the federal government his homes in Plymouth and Maple Grove, two SUVs and any holdings in the businesses tied to his ill-gotten fortune.
Goodman's willingness to admit to the allegations backs up what his attorney, Joe Dixon, told the Star Tribune last week upon the criminal complaint being filed: that his client "takes full responsibility for his actions and is doing what he can to make amends."
On Thursday, Dixon added that Goodman in November "actually turned himself in to the U.S. Attorney's Office and notified them of his criminal conduct."
Dixon declined to say what occurred in November that compelled Goodman, who is married and has children, to confess what he did, saying, "I can't get into that right now. … He's cooperating and making his assets available."
Prosecutors say Goodman made an array of purchases with money his 23 clients were led to believe would be put "into safe and secure investment accounts, such as individual retirement accounts and 401(k) retirement savings plans," the charging document read.
Instead, Goodman now admits that he spent much of the $2.25 million on plans to build a $1.7 million home in Plymouth, a $76,000 down payment on a $535,000 house in Maple Grove, $49,500 for a Ford Expedition, nearly $14,000 for a hot tub, $12,000 on a cruise vacation, $8,300 for fitness club memberships and $4,516 on jewelry from Tiffany.
Goodman, a registered investment adviser and broker, swindled his clients while operating Becoming Financial Group Inc., Becoming Financial Advisory Services and MoneyVerbs, a business that claimed to provide customers with financial guidance through an internet-based app.
Paul Walsh • 612-673-4482