A man once known as the “Wall Street Whiz Kid” has been charged with stealing nearly a quarter of a million dollars as part of an investment scam in Los Angeles County, officials announced Tuesday.
David Bloom, 59, faces nine counts of securities fraud and nine counts of grand theft with special allegations of two or more prior felony convictions, according to the Los Angeles County District Attorney’s Office.
He is accused of committing multiple counts of theft by convincing people to give him money in exchange for investments and other financial opportunities.
Prosecutors allege that Bloom never delivered on the investments and failed to return the bulk of the money given to him by victims in the case.
The alleged fraud occurred between 2021 and 2023 and involved nine victims and nearly $250,000, according to the DA’s office.
Bloom was arrested Monday and was set to be arraigned Tuesday. He was being held on a $500,000 bond.
District Attorney George Gascón said only about $60,000 has been returned to the victims.
Bloom was convicted twice for conning unsuspecting investors out of millions of dollars in New York.
In 1988, he was convicted of mail and security fraud. At just 23 years old, he convinced more than 100 people to hand over $15 million to fund his lavish lifestyle and not the promising stocks he agreed to.
Bloom served eight years in prison and was prohibited from selling securities for years, Gascón said. But he was later charged with grand larceny after scamming more New Yorkers for another $50,000, for which he spent an additional five years in prison.
He then apparently brought his schemes to Southern California.
Entrepreneur Caroline D’Amore is among the local victims Bloom allegedly scammed.
She was duped out of $35,000 after, she claims, Bloom promised to help get her pasta sauce line into Whole Foods stores nationwide.
“He became like family to me,” D’Amore said during a news conference Tuesday. “He will go to your child’s birthday, your brother’s funeral … and it took him months to actually pull off the scam with me. I think he worked on me for about six months.”
“David Bloom managed to convince hard-working people to turn over their earnings as part of a fraudulent investment scheme,” Gascón said. “Those who prey upon people for their own selfish gain will be held accountable for their actions.”