Team Members Archive

Michael Figueroa

Asset Protection Attorney

Mr. Figueroa is an entrepreneur and investor with over 40 years experience in real estate investments, private lending, and the legal field, with expertise in distressed property workouts and debt restructuring, asset protection strategies, mortgage lending (both private equity and institutional), construction, development and sales. Mr. Figueroa holds Licenses as a Real Estate Broker, a Document Preparer (Paralegal), and Mortgage Loan Officer and has held Licenses as a Mortgage Broker and Banker. Mr. Figueroa has also studied to obtain certain Securities Licenses and since 1983 has attended over 185 seminars regarding Tax Law, Foreclosures, Real Estate litigation, Private Placement / Securities Law, Bankruptcy, Entity Formation (Limited Liability, Corporations, Trusts), Estate Planning (Wills, Trusts), and Asset Protection Structures.

Mr. Figueroa graduated from the University of Arizona in 1973 where he began to develop his knowledge of business, finance, tax, real estate, contracts, foreclosure, and bankruptcy law. Through his business experience he has strengthened his expertise in these fields and continues to expand his knowledge through educational courses, and direct experience in each of these fields.

In 1980 he founded a private mortgage brokerage and banking company and owned an FHA/VA mortgage banking company. In 2002 he founded and was the chairman of Western Associates Development Company, LLC, Western Recovery Services, LLC and Coronado Ranch Estates; which developed lots, built homes and syndicated properties with a value over $100,000,000.

Currently he acts as both a principal and advisor regarding asset protection structures, purchase & sale of distressed assets, tax and real estate consulting and private mortgage lending.

In his philanthropic and community activities, Mr. Figueroa has served on the Naval Special Warfare Foundation (Navy S.E.A.L.S.) as Investment Committee Chairman and currently as Ambassador of the Navy S.E.A.L. Advisory Board. Mr. Figueroa is also a Board Member and Treasurer of the Goodwill Mission to China Foundation, manager of Tucson Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu (a martial arts academy), and currently serves as a small claims judge in Pima County. Previous offices held have included serving on the Advisory Board of the Yangtze International University in Nanjing, China, Trustee to the Vatican Observatory Foundation, and member of the Board of Directors of the Tucson Police Foundation. Michael has also lectured at the University of Arizona, University of San Diego, and Pepperdine Law Schools and has had a radio show on Voice America entitled “Strategies for Financial Survival”.

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Steven Knight

International Tax

Steven Knight, FCA, TEP, MIOD Chairman

The Castle Trust Group Steven is a Chartered Accountant, a member of the Society of Trust and Estate Practitioners and the Institute of Directors. Formerly of Coopers & Lybrand and Touche Ross, he was appointed to start up and manage the Gibraltar office of Price Waterhouse in 1989. He established the Castle Group in 1992 and is widely considered as a specialist in international tax planning for both wealthy individuals and companies. Steven holds a company manager license issued by Gibraltar’s Financial Services Commission in relation to the provision of Directorships to Experienced Investor Funds.

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Jim Rice

New York Estate Planning Attorney

James D. Rice (Jim) is the Director of Trusts and Estates at Rice Law Group. He has handled trusts, will matters, business succession planning, pension and IRA issues for people with moderate wealth to those who have accumulated significant assets.

Jim also handles many transactional issues involving corporations and other business entities, including commercial real estate finance and leasing. He is counsel to a European based renewable energy company with regard to some of their US interests.

Jim has litigated commercial cases and securities claims. He is a past President of the NYC Association of Insurance and Financial Advisors and a former attorney with Equitable/AXA.

Jim is a past-President of the Ossining Bar Association and is currently the President of the James Joyce Foundation USA, Inc. and Chairman of the Tara Circle, Inc.

He is a graduate of Manhattan College and Fordham Law School.

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Lon Fairbrook

Director of Client Development

Lonnie Loyd Fairbrook (Lon) provides project oversight in the registration, design, funding, operation and full service administration of U.S. Title 26 section IRC 402(b) compliant foreign retirement plans for U.S. persons and for persons or foreign financial institution transacting in U.S. Dollar that is Foreign Account Tax Compliance Act registered as ”Deemed Compliant”.

In 1983 Lon received his designation as a Chartered Life Underwriter (CLU) and in 1985 his Series 7 (General Securities) license through Bache Securities and became one of the first 200 Members of the International Association of Financial Planners which required (at that time) USA members to have professional experience in both Securities and Life Insurance.

With over 30 years industry experience, Lon is fully qualified IFA holding industry recognized CII (Award) & FAIO (CII). Undertakes regular further mandatory study to maintain annual CPD points as required & laid down by the CII & the Luxembourg state regulator. Keeping up to date with jurisdictional, tax treaty network, and domestic tax law issues is what ensures Lon’s advise is tax compliant.

Lon is an expert at evaluating Alternative Cross Borders Tax Compliant Financial Solutions accessed by means of a Private Placement Open Architecture Life or Annuity Policy and/or International Retirement Plan Tax Treaty Network Structuring. Lon interfaces with Attorney’s. Accountants, Asset Managers, Trustee and other Financial Service providers Cross Borders, to tailor each client’s own ideal Financial Solution. Also, he fulfills an ongoing role with each client in providing annual reviews and continues to oversee the structure (from a tax-compliance standpoint) including IRS Ruling in regards to, diversification, account control and ownership issues.

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