A “psychotic” former financier blew millions of dollars on presents for strangers, including luxury cars and cash gifts, while Bank of America failed to raise concerns, a lawsuit in New York claims.
Bank of America is being sued by the brother of the multi-millionaire who, following a helicopter accident which left him psychotic, went on a spending spree, blowing millions on strangers.
Jeffrey Horan, aged 43, a former Lehman Brothers and UBS financier, bought lavish gifts for people he hardly knew — including a $460,000 (€352,620) Lamborghini for a New Jersey contractor, and a $72,000 Mercedes for a woman from Queens, according to a lawsuit filed in Manhattan.
Horan’s lawyer brother, Larry, said Jeffrey suffers “mania and psychotic delusions”. Larry, who was appointed Jeffrey’s legal guardian, says his brother’s bank adviser did nothing to stop him during his spending spree and should have raised the alarm.
In addition to the Italian luxury car, Horan gave Alex Gershkovich a sum of $600,000 to work on his Upper East Side apartment despite barely knowing him, the lawsuit alleges.
And only a few days after meeting Erika Ortiz, Horan bought her the Mercedes and transferred $300,000 to her.
He also issued blank cheques to others during the 2010 spending spree which was part of a “strange, illogical, and self-destructive behaviour and improper and erratic financial transactions that resulted in the loss of millions of dollars,” the lawsuit says.
Horan’s financial adviser at Bank of America knew her client was mentally unstable but failed to raise the alarm, “ignoring suspicious and inexplicable activity”.
The lawsuit is seeking millions in compensation and punitive damages from the bank, Ortiz, and Gershkovich.
“When your helicopter crashes doing 165 miles an hour into trees, it tends to change people’s lives,” said Horan’s former business partner Drew Doscher.
“I lost a good friend and a great business partner.”
The lawsuit says “he was a danger to himself with respect to his financial affairs” and had been hospitalised twice for mental health issues. He was committed against his will in both cases.
While allowing Jeffrey Horan to empty his accounts, the bank continued to collect “large sums of money for fees”, Larry Horan said.
Ortiz and Gershkovich lied to Horan ‘in order to take advantage of his mania and psychotic delusions,’ the lawsuit charged.
It also seeks unspecified money and damages from Bank of America and financial firm Merrill Lynch over their mishandling of Jeffrey Horan accounts.
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