A former CFO and treasurer of Legg Mason’s fixed-income funds, Frances Guggino, has been banned from the securities industry by the SEC and ordered to pay a penalty of $15,000 for altering the books at a mutual fund in 2010. Guggino resigned in June 2010 during an internal investigation into the matter.
Guggino falsified documents regarding funds that Legg Mason acquired when it bought Citigroup’s asset management business in 2005. Legg Mason was required to advance a distribution to mutual funds owed in a 2005 SEC case against Smith Barney Family of Funds which used Citicorp Trust Bank as a transfer agent. However, Guggino failed to ensure that advances were made to Legg Mason Partners Capital Preservation II Fund and the Legg Mason Partners Variable Government Portfolio before their liquidation as required.
She then fabricated confirmation of the advance payments, which totaled $116,000, as well as e-mails and a copy of the fund’s trial balance.