SEC accuses attorney of defrauding professional athletes

BY foxsports • September 1, 2016

MONTGOMERY, Ala. (AP) The Securities and Exchange Commission has accused Alabama attorney Donald Watkins of defrauding millions of dollars from professional athletes and other investors.

The civil complaint filed Thursday in federal court in Atlanta said Watkins and his companies fraudulently raised $6 million. Regulators said investors were told their money would be used in waste-to-energy ventures and that a prominent national firm might soon acquire the businesses.

Walter Jospin, regional director of the SEC's Atlanta Regional Office, said investors were ''duped'' into believing a lucrative transaction was imminent. The complaint accused Watkins of spending the money on his girlfriend, alimony and personal expenses.

Watkins's attorney, Mario Williams, called the complaint baseless and retaliation for a lawsuit Watkins filed against the SEC. Williams says Watkins has held himself to the highest ethical standards.