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FBI Seeks Public Help to Locate Fugitive “Disney Dad”

A composite image showing a man in an FBI jacket in the foreground. Behind him is a "Wanted by the FBI" poster, and a black and white photo of a family with children posing with a costumed duck character. Skyscrapers are visible in the background.
Credit: Disney Dining

Few stories of financial crime capture the imagination quite like the bizarre and mysterious story of Christopher Burns, the so-called “Disney Dad.”

man and his friend

Credit: Burns Family

A financial advisor by trade, Burns vanished in 2020, leaving a trail of financial devastation and a mystified public in his wake. His wife and children have been just as baffled by his disappearance and the allegations against him as anyone else.

Nicknamed “the Disney Dad” because of the numerous Disney World vacations he took with his family, Burns was also a youth worker at a local church and had a weekly show on a local station in Georgia that focused on various topics related to personal finance.

Related: Former Pastor’s Disney Trips Landed Him Among the FBI’s Most Wanted Fugitives

family with donald duck at disney world

Credit: Burns Family/BelievingMyself Blog

Now among the FBI’s Most Wanted fugitives for white-collar crime, Christopher Burns’ disappearance is intertwined with a sprawling Ponzi scheme, an age-old financial ruse that continues to ensnare victims despite numerous high-profile cases. Burns’ saga is a sobering reminder of the vulnerabilities within financial systems, the often devastating consequences of misplaced trust, the pain of betrayal, and the destruction of the family unit.

The Rise & Fall of a Former Financial Advisor & Pastor

Christopher Burns wasn’t always a fugitive. For years, he built a reputation as a savvy financial advisor, operating primarily out of Atlanta, Georgia.

Through his firm, Dynamic Money, based in Sandy Springs, Georgia, as well as two associated financial groups, Burns cultivated a client base that trusted him implicitly with their financial futures. But behind the façade of respectability, Burns was busy orchestrating a massive Ponzi scheme—a type of investment fraud that pays existing investors with funds collected from new investors rather than from profits earned.

Related: FBI Gets Involved in Disney’s Alleged Plans to Build a New Theme Park Resort in Texas

Christopher Burns Pastor

Credit: Federal Bureau of Investigation

Investigators say that Burns used money he earned by defrauding clients to fund his extravagant lifestyle, part of which included numerous lavish trips to the Walt Disney World Resort in Central Florida.

By 2020, Burns’ scheme had begun to unravel. The U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) accused him of defrauding dozens of investors out of more than $10 million. The Commission’s complaint detailed things Burns allegedly did, including promising high returns with minimal risk–something that often serves as a red flag in investment opportunities.

When the returns failed to materialize and investor demands for withdrawals grew, the scheme collapsed.

Burns on the Run

On September 24, 2020, the day before Christopher Burns was scheduled to hand over financial documents to the SEC, he vanished, seemingly without a trace.

man and woman with three young children

Credit: Burns family

His abandoned car was found near a bridge in Dunwoody, Georgia, with no signs of struggle or foul play. Inside the vehicle were copies of three cashier’s checks totaling more than $78,000, according to the FBI. The disappearance marked the beginning of a nationwide manhunt Burns as the days turned into months, and those months turned into years.

It’s been almost four years since anyone has seen Christopher Burns, making the question of his whereabouts one of the most perplexing and confusing mysteries in recent years. During his absence, FBI agents assigned to the case have admitted they believe Burns is still alive, though there have been no credible sightings of the fugitive since he disappeared.

family at disney world cinderella castle dark clouds and fbi most wanted poster

Credit: Becky Burkett/FBI/Burns Family/Canva

Where Is Christopher Burns?

Authorities familiar with the case believe it’s likely that Burns is living under an assumed identity–and possibly abroad. The search has spanned international borders, with the Federal Bureau of Investigation and Interpol joining the effort.

Related: Disney Actress Found Dead Following “Cryptic” Texts About an Imposter & the FBI

Two images of a man at a radio station. In the first, he is smiling and speaking into a microphone while wearing a light blue shirt. In the second, he is seen from behind, wearing a suit, and speaking into a microphone with the station's name visible.

Credit: Facebook/Dynamic Money

Despite the extensive resources deployed, Burns has managed to elude capture, prompting speculation about his preparedness and possible accomplices.

Burns’ ability to remain at large for years could suggest a high degree of planning and resourcefulness. It also points to possible flaws in international cooperation on financial crimes. As financial systems become more globalized, so too must the efforts to combat fraud and bring perpetrators to justice.

The Ghosts of a Social Media Presence

Despite the fact that Christopher Burns hasn’t been seen or heard from since September 2024, potential clients wouldn’t necessarily know it upon first glance at his social media accounts, all of which are still live online.

The Facebook page for Burns’ company, Dynamic Money, is still live, though the date of the last post corresponds to the date he vanished: September 24, 2020.

Screenshot of Dynamic Money's Facebook page. Shows profile picture, cover photo with "WHEN YOU NEED A PLAN," and details like location, phone number, and email. The most recent post features Chris Burns discussing the economy and savings. Tabs for Posts, About, and more are visible.

Credit: Screenshot/Facebook

The Impact on Burns’ Victims & His Family

Burns’ disappearance has left a wake of financial ruin.

Many of his clients were retirees who had entrusted him with their life savings. The fallout from his scheme has been devastating, with some victims losing all of their savings, as well as their homes. The emotional toll has been equally profound, as clients have been left to deal with not only the financial fallout–but the fallout from shattered trust as well.

Christopher Burns also left his family in a shambles when he disappeared. Neither his now-ex-wife nor his three children had any idea about his questionable and allegedly criminal business dealings. They, too, wonder where he is today, and his ex-wife, Meredith, has issued a public plea for him to turn himself in, but so far, it’s been to no avail.

The FBI Implores the Public to Share Any Tips They Might Have

If you have any information about Christopher Burns, if you think you have seen him, or if you may have been a victim of his alleged Ponzi scheme, the Federal Bureau of Investigation urges you to contact the Atlanta Field Office by calling (770) 216-3000. You can also contact your local FBI office, the nearest American Embassy or Consulate, or you submit a tip online at tips.fbi.gov.

About Rebekah Tyndall Burkett

Rebekah grew up in Forney, Texas and lives just outside of Dallas. She’s been a Disney superfan since childhood, experiencing the magic at Walt Disney World for the first time at the age of 11. Journeys to Neverland are at least a yearly occurrence for her, her husband and her four children (the Fab Four). When they go to the parks, they stay in Florida for three weeks at a time. Rebekah loves exploring the history of the parks, the genius behind the Magic in the person of Walt Disney, and she is intrigued by all things Disney World and Disney Imagineering. When in the parks, Rebekah and her husband Scott make the most of their time by enjoying every minute with their Fab Four, by delving deeper into Walt’s vision for the parks and into the history behind the Walt Disney World Resort, and by photographing the many different types of architecture at Magic Kingdom, Disney’s Hollywood Studios and on the World Showcase at EPCOT. When she’s not in the parks, Rebekah is excitedly setting travel dates and planning her family’s next adventure to their happy place deep within the Sunshine State. On breaks from planning her next trip, Rebekah is a writer, journalist and children’s author, penning children’s books about kids with special needs that she affectionately calls “believement-achievement” stories. Her hobbies include creative writing, paper crafting and interviewing Imagineers. She is also an advocate for Autism Awareness and for children with developmental disabilities of all kinds.

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