EBSA News Release: [05/16/2012]
Contact Name: Michael Trupo or Jason Surbey
Phone Number: (202) 693-6588 or x4668
Release Number: 12-0986-SAN
US Department of Labor alleges Idaho plan administrator misused funds
Matthew D. Hutcheson allegedly took more than $3.2 million from retirement plans
WASHINGTON The U.S. Department of Labor has filed a complaint in the U.S. District Court for the District of Idaho against Matthew D. Hutcheson alleging that he violated the Employee Retirement Income Security Act. The complaint alleges that, toward the end of 2010, Hutcheson used more than $3.2 million representing the retirement plan savings of workers from multiple employers for his own personal expenses and in an attempt to purchase an interest in the Tamarack Resort a failed ski and golf resort in Idaho. This prohibited transaction has left affected retirement plans without sufficient funds to pay participants all the benefits owed to them. Hutcheson also faces a separate criminal indictment, which was filed in the same court on April 10, in connection with the same transaction.
"This is a case of a fiduciary violating the trust of retirement plan participants who relied on him to invest and grow their hard-earned savings," said Assistant Secretary of Labor for Employee Benefits Security Phyllis C. Borzi. "The Labor Department is taking all actions necessary to recover money for workers who are counting on these savings for a secure retirement."
The department also has filed an application for a temporary restraining order and for an order to show cause why a preliminary injunction should not be granted. The department seeks to remove Hutcheson and other named defendants as fiduciaries of the affected plans, and to appoint an independent fiduciary to administer the plans. In addition to Hutcheson, defendants include Hutcheson Walker Advisors LLC; Green Valley Holdings LLC; and the Retirement Security Plan and Trust, formerly known as the Pension Liquidity Plan and Trust.
The case was investigated by staff from the Labor Department's Employee Benefits Security Administration's Dallas Regional Office. The case is being litigated by the Labor Department's Office of the Solicitor in Washington, D.C. Employers and workers can contact EBSA toll-free at 866-444-3272 for help with problems relating to private sector retirement and health plans. For more information, visit http://www.dol.gov/ebsa/.