According to BrokerCheck records financial advisor Kevin Wilson (Wilson), currently employed by National Securities Corporation (National Securities) has been subject to at least four customer complaints. According to records kept by The Financial Industry Regulatory Authority (FINRA), most of Wilson’s customer complaints allege that Wilson committed violations of the securities laws with respect to the sale of predominately private placement securities. These private placement sales occurred while Wilson was employed by Laidlaw & Company (UK) Ltd. (Laidlaw).
The securities lawyers of Gana Weinstein LLP recently filed a complaint on behalf of a client alleging that Laidlaw & Company (UK) Ltd. (Laidlaw) recommended the investor purchase a micro cap stock underwritten by the firm in violation of the securities laws. According to newsources and public filings Laidlaw and its brokers have been involved in the fraudulent promotion of small and micro cap stocks to their clients in violation of their duties to their clients to disclose conflicts of interests.
Recently, one of Laidlaw’s clients, Barry Hoing (Hoing), was charged by The Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) for generating $27 million through a “classic pump-and-dump scheme.” The SEC’s allegations focus on stocks including BioZone Pharmaceuticals (now Cocrystal Pharma) (COCP), MGT Capital (OTC: MGTI), and MabVax Therapeutics (OTC: MBVX). However, other public filings reveal Hoing was also involved in other stocks including Riot Blockchain (RIOT), PolarityTE (PTE formerly COOL), and Marathon Patent Group (MARA). In addition, Laidlaw was involved in other private placement securities offerings including Aethlon Medical, Actinium, Boston Therapeutics, 5G Investment, Alliaqua, Aspen Group, Brazahav Resources, Fusion Telecoms International, Protea Biosciences Group, Aeolus Pharmaceuticals, Medovex Corp, Relmada Therapeutics, Sevion Therapeutics, Spectrascience, and Spherix.
Brokers are required under the securities laws to treat their clients fairly. This obligation includes the duties to disclose material risks of the investments they recommend and to present products, particularly complex or confusing products, in a fair and balanced manner that allows the client to evaluate the recommendation. Another important obligation advisors have is to make only suitable recommendations for investments to the client. There are many investments that are not appropriate for the majority of investors or for certain investors given their risk tolerance, age, and other factors. Advisors should not present these investment options to clients. There are two screens that advisors must employ to determine whether an investment is suitable for a client. First, there must be a reasonable basis for the recommendation – meaning that the product has been investigated and due diligence conducted into the investment’s features, benefits, risks, and other relevant factors. The advisor must conclude that the investment is suitable for at least some investors and some securities may be suitable for no one. Second, the broker then must match the investment as being appropriate for the customer’s specific investment needs and objectives such as the client’s retirement status, long or short term goals, age, disability, income needs, or any other relevant factor.
Wilson entered the securities industry in 1999. From December 2008 until November 2010 Wilson was registered with Aegis Capital Corp. From October 2010 until September 2017 Wilson was associated with Laidlaw & Company. Since August 2017 Wilson has been associated with National Securities out of the firm’s New York, New York office location.
Investors who have suffered losses are encouraged to contact us at (800) 810-4262 for consultation. Investors may be able recover their losses through securities arbitration. The attorneys at Gana Weinstein LLP are experienced in representing investors in pump and dump cases and brokerage firms’ failure to disclose conflicts of interests to their clients. Our consultations are free of charge and the firm is only compensated if you recover.