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Citigroup Fined 1.5 Million In Funeral Preneed Trust Case|YourFuneralGuy

28 May

Citigroup was fined 1.5 million in a Funeral Preneed Trust Case. The branch of Citigroup Fined was Citigroup Global Markets. The case  involves  the jailed Clayton Smart, and the Citigroup Broker Mark Singer, Forest Hill Cemetery in Memphis and Michigan.

This case involved preneed cemetery trusts.


Penalties of $1.5 million have been levied against Citigroup for supervisory violations related to its handling of millions of dollars in trust funds belonging to Forest Hill cemeteries in Memphis and Michigan.

The penalties — including a $750,000 fine and forfeiture of $750,000 in commissions — were imposed Wednesday by the Financial Industry Regulatory Authority against Citigroup Global Markets Inc., whose broker is accused of theft and money laundering here.

The commissions will be returned to the cemetery trusts as partial restitution.

“Firms have a duty to protect customer funds by taking prompt and meaningful action when they encounter indications of possible fraud or misappropriation,” said FINRA official James S. Shorris in Washington. “That duty is particularly critical when firms handle trust funds where the beneficiaries may be unsophisticated investors who are unaware of how the funds are being handled.”


Funeral Industry|Funeral News|Funeral Blog by Your Funeral Guy


Illinois:Burr Oak Cemetery reform legislation passes-YourFuneralGuy

17 Jan

Burr Oak Cemetery Scandal brought cemetery reform to Illinois

In Illinois State wide Cemetery reform passed the Illinois Legislature and went to the Governor this past week. This  is  a significant step toward stopping Funeral and Cemetery Scandal in the State of Illinois.

The governor of the State Pat Quinn praised the  legislation in his State of the State address.

When it becomes law there will be changes to help the funeral and cemetery consumer in Illinois.

Here area few of the changes that will take place in Illinois when the bill becomes law:

1.Cemetery owners, managers and customer service employees would have to be licensed,

2.Regulatory agency will conduct audits

3.Regulatory agency will issue fines of up to $10,000 for violations such as poor grounds upkeep or failing to keep burial maps.

In the aftermath of a widely publicized scandal at Burr Oak Cemetery, the Illinois House voted Wednesday to toughen regulation and improve oversight of state cemeteries.

Gov. Quinn all but signed the legislation during his State of the State speech, applauding the act as important reform…..

Under the bill sparked by Burr Oak, all cemetery workers will be required to register with the state, and owners, managers and customer service employees would have to be licensed. The bill also places cemetery oversight under the governor’s authority, taking it away from the state comptroller’s office.


The Citizens of the State of Illinois have spoken. No Burr oak Cemetery Scandal ever again.

Funeral Industry|Funeral News|Funeral  Blog by Your Funeral Guy

Burr Oak Cemetery Scandal 9,000 Graves beyond capacity-YourFuneralGuy

12 Jan

Burr Oak Cemetery: Illegal grave stacking has this scandal ridden site beyond capacity

The Burr Oak Cemetery is 9,000 graves beyond capacity. This according to Cook County Sheriff  Tom Dart. The Burr oak cemetery Scandal was one of the top funeral scandals in 2009 and the past decade. In July 2009,  4 people were arrested  and  over three hundred graves were found desecrated.

The legal impact on the owners of the company, Perpetua, Inc has  not been revealed. How could the owners not have know?. How could the executives at this neglectful company not be aware? Mismanagement definitely. Fraud Maybe. What will be the effect of this information on the many Burr Oak Cemetery Lawsuits?


CHICAGO — Law enforcement officials say a new study shows thousands more people may be buried at a suburban ChicagoCemetery than the land is supposed to hold.

Cook County Sheriff Tom Dart says the study suggests the practice of stacking caskets on top of each other or simply discarding remains was far more common at Burr Oak Cemetery than they suspected.


Sheriff Dart has handled this scandal well. But their appears to be no relief for those families who are victims of this national tragedy

The lesson for the funeral consumer here is to to research information on the funeral  or cemetery provider you do business with.

Funeral Industry|Funeral News| Funeral Blog by Your funeral Guy Funeral Director, Illinois, Virginia


Burr Oak Cemetery to use Radar-Your Funeral Guy

4 Oct

Latest in the Butr Oak Cemetery Scandal

Latest in the Butr Oak Cemetery Scandal

The Burr Oak Cemetery will begin to use Radar in locating grave spaces. This is an effort to find places where burials can take place at the Cemetery. It is hoped that this will expedite the reopening of Burr Oak Cemetery-

In July 2009 over 300 graves were desecrated at Burr Oak Cemetery causing state and federal investigations.Burials were halted over the summer after four cemetery employees were arrested and charged in a scheme to empty graves, dump the remains and re-sell the newly-emptied gravesites….

Until now, Burr Oak consultant Roman Szabelski, who also runs Catholic cemeteries in the Chicago archdiocese, says long sticks have been used to determine whether graves are empty or not.  That’s time-consuming.  So, he says, in the next several weeks, a Florida company is being brought in to use radar devices to determine where there are available graves.


Funeral Industry|Funeral Blog by Your Funeral Guy


Cemetery| Funeral Bill of Rights©-YourFuneralGuy

21 Sep
Funeral and Cemetery Bill of Rights needs to pass Congress.

Cemetery and Funeral Bill of Rights© needs to pass Congress.

Congressman Bobby Rush has announced a Cemetery and Funeral Bill of Rights© in the proposed Bereaved Consumers Protection Act.

This is an effective response to the Burr Oak Cemetery Scandal(near Chicago) discovered in July: Over Three hundred graves were desecrated.

In the Eden Memorial Park Scandal discovered in Mission Hills California last week over 500 graves were desecrated.

There has never been nationwide Cemetery Legislation and as of now there is generally no way to file a complaint against a cemetery to get resolution.

Today you can file a complaint against a funeral home and get resolution. This is done under the Funeral Rule.

There is no place to file a complaint for cemeteries.

This is why the legislation makes sense. The bad guys can be stopped,if the cemetery and funeral  bill of rights is enacted-proposed Bereaved Consumers Protection Act.

Snippet from

“Legislation being introduced by U.S. Rep. Bobby Rush would establish a national bill of rights for consumers of cemetery and funeral home services.

The Chicago Democrat unveiled the Bereaved Consumers Protection Act during a news conference Monday.

The act would amend the Federal Trade Commission’s Funeral Rule. The rule prohibits unfair or deceptive acts or practices in the funeral operations industry.”

Cemetery|Funeral| Industry Blog by Your Funeral Guy.


Burr Oak Cemetery No Longer a Crime Scene-YourFuneralGuy

8 Aug

Illinois Cemetery Desecrati (Small)-thumb-300x201-49146The latest news in the Burr Oak Cemetery Scandal is that it is no longer a crime scene. This is according to the Cook County Sheriff”s website. The cemetery has been turned over to the Court Receiver. “BURR OAK CEMETERY WILL NOT BE REOPENED AT THIS TIME”

There is enough evidence gathered for prosecution. The Sheriff sees no need to excavate the cemetery for months or years.

As mentioned in the previous post the recovered bones will not undergo DNA testing. The investigation will continue off site.

From the Press Page at the Cook County Sheriffs Website.

“The turning over of day-to-day operations to the receiver is a step towards allowing the cemetery to conduct normal business,” Dart said.  “I want to thank the public for their patience during the time we were forced to close the cemetery to process the crime scenes and ask for their continued patience while Mr. Szabelski continues to work towards re-opening Burr Oak.  I hope that everything that has been done will help ease the pain of those with loved ones buried here and allow them to finally have some closure in this matter.”

Community Members have come together to form the Chicago Burr Oak  Cemetery Historical Society. They are working together to find a fan appropriate memorial for the bones unearthed at Burr Oak Cemetery.

Burr Oak Cemetery Scandal|For some no answers-

Funeral Industry|Funeral Blog by Your Funeral Guy.

Burr Oak cemetery pic from Dallas News.


Burr Oak Cemetery Scandal:FBI says bones|not to be DNA tested-YourFuneralGuy

7 Aug

There will Be No DNA testing on 1,100 discarded bones at Burr Oak cemetery

There will Be No DNA testing on 1,100 discarded bones at Burr Oak cemetery

There will Be No DNA testing on 1,100 discarded bones at Burr Oak cemetery. The Chicago office of the FBI has stated that the bones recovered from Burr Oak Cemetery will not be tested.

This will come as a disappointment to many families would like to know whether or not there deceased relatives were among those who were dug up.The relatives of those desecrated are the victims.

We will never know the identities of many that were taken out of their graves. Approximately1,100 bones were recovered.

Assistant Special Agent Trautmann Director of the Chicago FBI office stated on August 7th 2009 :

Even if we could’ve obtained the DNA profile from bones … then we have the problem of who we compare that to, not knowing who those bones belong to”

Cook County Sheriff Dart stated:

For those individuals who are looking for every part of human remains that were disinterred to be recovered, that is not going to occur, it cannot occur,”

DNA testing on 1,100 Bones recovered in Burr Oak Grave Robbing Scandal is not to happen

DNA testing on 1,100 Bones recovered in Burr Oak Grave Robbing Scandal is not to happen

Funeral industry Funeral blog by Your Funeral Guy

You can get some help here: Cook County Sheriff’s

Burr oak cemetery pic from religion

Source: The Huffington Post