Department of Financial Institutions
Jewell Robbins Sentenced to 120 Days in Jail
FRANKFORT, Ky. (July 16, 2008) – Jewell Robbins, aka Jewell Burgin, of Nicholasville, was today sentenced to 120 days in jail after Judge Thomas D. Wingate found her in violation of contempt of court orders.
“We take very seriously the responsibility to protect Kentucky investors from fraud,” said Kentucky Department of Financial Institutions (DFI) Commissioner Cordell Lawrence. “Hopefully this will serve as a deterrent and disincentive to Jewell Robbins, as well as to others.”
During a show cause hearing today in Franklin Circuit Court, counsel for DFI presented evidence that Robbins continues to defy the court’s orders of June 12, 2006, and May 10, 2007, to refrain from selling securities.
Evidence included a recorded conversation between WAVE 3 TV news reporter Charla Young, posing as an investor for an investigative news report, and Rev. William Jackson, who claimed to be selling shares on behalf of Jewell Robbins. During the recorded conversation, Jackson connected into a three-party conversation including Robbins, in which the minister discussed “what we had talked about yesterday in reference to the finances” and “making sure we’re doing everything the right way, that nothing will be hindered.” Robbins replied, “Good. Thank you.”
After Robbins disconnected, Jackson continued his conversation with Young by going into detail describing how the investment could be paid for in a way to “get around getting anything attached to (Robbins).”
On the stand, Robbins acknowledged that it was her voice on the recording, but said she had never spoken to Jackson before that day. She denied selling assignments and having any agreement with Jackson. She claimed she did not know what he was talking about and that she “just listened.”
Summing up DFI’s case, department attorney Bill Owsley said that statements made by Robbins on the stand flatly contradict the cryptic statements in the recorded telephone conversation. Owsley said the telephone conversation implied that Robbins and Jackson were working around the court’s order, and Robbins did not deny that knowledge or act surprised during the recorded conversation.
On June 12, 2006, Robbins signed a voluntary, permanent injunction order that bars her from selling any securities, including partial interest in litigation or judgments. Robbins sold shares in baseless lawsuits that attempt to claim inheritance related to the 1900s Spindletop oil strike in Texas. An order was entered May 10, 2007, finding Robbins in contempt of court because she continued to sell securities, despite the injunction. In 2007, the judge sentenced her to 120 days in jail, but suspended the sentence contingent on her complying with the court orders.
In court today, Judge Wingate said the court had been patient with Robbins but that she continues to sell securities in a “so-called urban legend.”
For more background information on DFI’s case against Robbins, visit www.kfi.ky.gov/consumerinformation/ofivrobbins.htm.
DFI is an agency in the Public Protection Cabinet. It supervises the financial services industry by examining, chartering, licensing and registering various financial institutions, securities firms and professionals operating in Kentucky. DFI’s mission is to serve the public through effective and efficient regulation that promotes consumer confidence and economic growth.