Moriarty takes 5-year prison sentence

August 4, 2014
Al Moriarty

Al Moriarty

Grover Beach financier Al Moriarty has agreed to a plea deal in a multi-million dollar financial fraud case that will place him behind bars for five years.

Moriarty, 81, owned and operated Moriarty Enterprises in Grover Beach from 2007 to 2012.

Moriarty was arrested in May 2013 on seven felony charges. Prosecutors said Moriarty placed nearly $10 million of investor funds in his personal bank account. He then used the funds to pay other investors, construction cost on his own home and other personal and business expenses.

In his agreement with the San Luis Obispo County District Attorney’s Office, Moriarty pleaded no contest to seven felonies and admitted to causing investors more then $3.2 million in losses. His convictions include security sales fraud, embezzlement and security sales without required licensing.

The deal stipulates that Moriarty will serve a five-year prison sentence in county jail. He must also pay full restitution to the victims he defrauded. Moriarty also agreed to transfer all of his present and future property to the court for victim restitution.

Moriarty is scheduled to appear in court for an official sentencing hearing on September 17.

Inline Feedbacks
View all comments

I wonder if Cal Poly will strike his name off of the facilities he donated embezzled money for? Will Cal Poly return the stolen assets? Hmm, receiving stolen property, although cash? Scott Peterson, Al Moriarity, Steve Anderson, Bob Nicholsen – what do they all have in common?

These “white collar” criminals have killed people. Look at the Enron scam and how many suicides that caused. We will have to see about Moriarty but I would not doubt if his theft of people’s retirement investments, etc., led to a suicide or two. If this is the case, he should be tried for second degree murder.

Start a rumor in the prizon that his conviction is a cover for child molestor.

So you like to start rumors that could kill people?

Where does it end, how far will you go?

J.E. have you stopped molesting children? If so, please post your address so everyone can send you congratulation cards

Wonder how much of the restitution will come from Cal Poly? Not mentioned in the story is the huge amount of other people’s money Moriarity “donated” to Cal Poly athletics. His name remains atop the stadium scoreboard, due, according to the university press team, to “contractual arrangements” with the felon. Victims should pursue all this ill-given “donation,” or the university, if it has a conscience, might just give it back to them.

Should have used Gearhart’s legal team. Stall, obfuscate, hide, outlast the D.A.

What about Kerry’s participation? Why a free pass for the kid? Oh yea, Notre Dame lineage. It helps ’round here.


So are you saying that Kelly went to Notre Damn. No, he couldn’t even get into Cuesta. His kid couldn’t either. His one son works for the City of SLO in Utilities. The Gearheart’s and Nance’s have been friends for decades and that is how one gets a job a SLOtown.

Death sentence or not, there are several elements about fraud that need to get some light for the public that will eventually become fraud victims:

1) 1 in 3 persons is affected by fraud yearly.

2) upon facing failing savings plans, retiring professionals often resort to white collar crimes to afford the same lifestyle they have been accustomed to and hoping that their elderly status will lessen their sentencing terms. Although the deal stipulates that Moriarty will serve a five-year prison sentence in county jail, it has certainly taken much more time for some of his victims to save the amounts that were stolen than Moriarty will even spend in jail.

3) many white collar criminals like Sammy Antar never spend their sentencing in jail. Instead, they are placed in house arrest which fails to deter them from additional crimes

4) district attorneys and law enforcement have limited resources so, when a criminal is willing to agree to a plea bargain for much lesser crimes, the real victims end up suffering

5) victims are often better represented through alternative fraud resolution approaches like mediation, arbitration or even civil courts.The burden of proof is then much lesser along with the chances of being improperly victimized by investigative staff.

6) the main victims that gain from criminal prosecution are a) the unpaid & often defrauding employees (e.g. remember the case of Bernie Madoff?) b) the government c) the banks

7) given the higher burden of proof in criminal courts (e.g. beyond a reasonable doubt in criminal courts = 90% guilty vs. preponderance of evidence = 50% in civil courts), prosecutors and law enforcement minimize the number of charges laid against a fraudster. For instance, in the case of Grover Beach financier Al Moriarty, only 7 felony charges were made. A potential for a dozen more may be more likely in civil courts with chances for much better punitive damages.

8) resourceless, hopeless and homeless victims are often ignored and, even if Moriarty is sentenced to repay full restitution, it is only for the victims that were identified and approved. Just like in the case of Bernie Madoff, the much larger pool of victims often is not well represented, if at all.

9) As we are dealing with a savvy financier, it is highly likely that our US personnel and Courts will never issue rogatory letters to even investigate transfers of money out of the USA. This situation may change once FATCA (the Fair Accounting Taxation and Compliance Act) is fully implemented but, for now, many criminals like Crazy Eddie are able to have their families live wealthy and be extremely thankful for the white crimes committed.

10) given the false perception that white collar crimes are not violent, judges with full jails like in CA, tend to want to be less punitive.

Upon the official sentencing hearing on September 17, we should be able to hear some interesting statements demanding for lenience on this criminal. Let’s just not forget the silenced victims like Rene-Thierry Magon de la Villehuchet or Mark Madoff. Before we all become victims of fraud and are rubbed away from our planned futures, let’s make sure that we send a strong punitive message. At Motriarty’s age, he should have known better and found a different solution than stealing from law complying others.

Perhaps we could get the SLO Co. DA’s office to prosecute Anthony Mozilla, Lloyd Blankfein, Jamie Dimond and others that caused the massive economic meltdown of 2008 that cost multi-billions in losses for smaller investors, forced foreclosures, and grinding unemployment …while they made billions in fraud, theft, and short-selling.

I hope your statement was “tongue in cheek.” While Dow may be an improvement on Shea, I doubt that he has the legal resources to even attempt such an action — assuming that he was willing to forego any future political advancement by doing so.

Reductio ad absurdum …but not by much.

And no, I do not expect any sudden growth in spine among our great public prosecutors here, but as you infer…it may be beyond the jurisdiction of our county gumshoes.

Not so Federal District Attorneys, or States Attorneys General. Any could initiate proceedings or compel a Federal ( or State ) Grand Jury against these mega-crooks if so desired.

It’s time to wage a moral and political war against the billionaires and corporate leaders, on Wall Street and here in our county, whose policies and greed are destroying the middle class of America.

I agree but this case is not the same. At best it is the case of a local con-artist who thought he could outwit the system and get away with it. The big boys KNOW they can outwit the system and get away with it because they own the legislators and other politicians who design and regulate that system.

Death sentence likely