Crime

A Fort Worth Insurance Salesman Stole a $1 Million Settlement from a Widowed Mother of Three, Prosecutors Say

When Danny Secker died unexpectedly last January at the age of 41, he left behind a widow, three sons -- one 3 years old, the others 5-month-old twins -- along with a $1 million life insurance policy through Transamerica to help see his family through.

The timing of the life insurance policy, purchased just three months before his death, was almost uncanny, but Transamerica did its due diligence and wired payment to his widow.

She never saw a dime.

Instead, according to an indictment filed Wednesday in federal court, the money went straight into the bank account of their insurance agent, Fort Worth financial planner Caleb Deason. According to court documents, he did so by altering the routing information on the wire transfer and forging the widow's signature.

Deason is charged with one count each of wire fraud and money laundering.

The indictment doesn't go into detail about Deason's motives, saying only that he used the funds for "personal use" and bought a a 2010 Range Rover. Other public documents show that Deason was also fighting foreclosure on his half-million-dollar Fort Worth home at the time of the alleged theft.

Neither Secker nor his widow is identified in the federal indictment, but they are named in a civil case filed against Deason in Tarrant County by Transamerica.

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Eric Nicholson
Contact: Eric Nicholson