Articles Posted in REITs

shutterstock_185582-300x225Advisor Victor Rigoni (Rigoni), currently employed by Summit Brokerage Services, Inc. (Summit Brokerage) has been subject to at least three customer complaints.  According to a BrokerCheck report some of the customer complaints concern alternative investments and direct participation products (DPPs) such as non-traded real estate investment trusts (REITs), oil & gas programs, annuities, and equipment leasing programs.  The attorneys at Gana Weinstein LLP have extensive experience handling investor losses caused by these types of products.

In October 2018 a customer filed a complaint alleging that Rigoni violated the securities laws by being recommended alternative investments causing breach of contract, fraud, misrepresentation, breach of fiduciary duty, and violation of FINRA rules. The claim alleges $125,000 in damages and is currently pending.

Rigoni is also the subject of multiple tax liens in amounts totaling over $50,000.  Large tax liens on a broker’s CRD can be a red flag that the broker may be influenced to engage in high commission activity in order to satisfy personal debts.  In addition, a broker’s inability to manage their own finances is relevant in a customer’s decision to use their services.

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shutterstock_187083428-300x198Advisor William Burks (Burks), currently employed by Centaurus Financial, Inc. (Centaurus) has been subject to at least seven customer complaints and one criminal matter.  According to a BrokerCheck report some of the customer complaints concern alternative investments and direct participation products (DPPs) such as non-traded real estate investment trusts (REITs), oil & gas programs, annuities, and equipment leasing programs.  The attorneys at Gana Weinstein LLP have extensive experience handling investor losses caused by these types of products.

In May 2018 a customer filed a complaint alleging that Burks violated the securities laws by making unsuitable recommendations and the associated liquidity risks were not fully explained.  The claim alleges $415,000 in damages and is currently pending.

In January 2016 a customer complained that Burks violated the securities laws by making unsuitable recommendations and misrepresentations.  The claim alleges $32,000 in damages and was denied by the firm.

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shutterstock_156972491-300x198Advisor William Richardson (Richardson), currently employed by InvestCorp, Inc. (InvestaCorp) has been subject to at least five customer complaints.  According to a BrokerCheck report some of the customer complaints concern alternative investments and direct participation products (DPPs) such as non-traded real estate investment trusts (REITs), oil & gas programs, annuities, and equipment leasing programs.  The attorneys at Gana Weinstein LLP have extensive experience handling investor losses caused by these types of products.

In November 2018 a customer filed a complaint alleging that Richardson violated the securities laws by being recommended alternative investments that were unsuitable. The claim alleges $500,000 in damages and is currently pending.

In July 2009 a customer complained that Richardson violated the securities laws by being recommended a limited partnership investment that was not unsuitable. The claim alleges $50,000 in damages and was closed.

Our firm often handles cases involving direct participation products, Non-Traded REITs, oil and gas offerings, equipment leasing products, and other alternative investments.  These products are almost always unsuitable for investors.  In addition, the brokers who sell them are paid additional commission in order to hype inferior quality investments which provides a perverse incentives by brokers to create an artificial market for products that no honest advisor would sell.

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shutterstock_85873471-300x200Advisor Leslie Goldstein (Goldstein), currently employed by Securities America, Inc. (Securities America) has been subject to at least four customer complaints, two regulatory actions, and one employment termination for cause.  According to a BrokerCheck report some of the customer complaints concern alternative investments and direct participation products (DPPs) such as non-traded real estate investment trusts (REITs), oil & gas programs, annuities, and equipment leasing programs.  The attorneys at Gana Weinstein LLP have extensive experience handling investor losses caused by these types of products.

In December 2018 a customer complained that Goldstein violated the securities laws by alleging that the financial advisor did not explain the impact of an early withdrawal from a variable annuity on the client’s future annuity income benefits. The claim was withdrawn.

In July 2018 a customer filed a complaint alleging that Goldstein violated the securities laws by alleging concentrated positions in illiquid investments, annuities, life insurance and non-traded REITs which were unsuitable. The allegations also include churning, excessive commissions, breach of fiduciary duty, and negligence. The claim alleged $1,000,000 in damages and is currently pending.

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shutterstock_62862913-259x300Advisor Wenjinn Chang (Chang), currently employed by Independent Financial Group, LLC (Independent Financial) has been subject to at least two customer complaints.  According to a BrokerCheck report the customer complaints concern alternative investments and direct participation products (DPPs) such as non-traded real estate investment trusts (REITs), oil & gas programs, annuities, and equipment leasing programs.  The attorneys at Gana Weinstein LLP have extensive experience handling investor losses caused by these types of products.

In October 2018 a customer filed a complaint alleging that Chang violated the securities laws by alleging over-concentration of non-traded REITs that were not suitable and that resulted in losses. The claim alleged $50,000 in damages and the claim is currently pending.

In September 2018 a customer filed a complaint alleging that Chang violated the securities laws by Alleging that the broker failed to advise of the risks of the investments made and that the Claimant has suffered losses as a result of the investments made.  The claim alleged $75,000 in damages and the claim settled for $10,000.

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shutterstock_64859686-300x300Advisor Donna Hines (Hines), currently employed by Cetera Advisors LLC (Cetera) has been subject to at least four customer complaints.  According to a BrokerCheck report the customer complaints concern alternative investments and direct participation products (DPPs) such as non-traded real estate investment trusts (REITs), oil & gas programs, annuities, and equipment leasing programs.  The attorneys at Gana Weinstein LLP have extensive experience handling investor losses caused by these types of products.

In June 2018 a customer filed a complaint alleging that Hines violated the securities laws by alleging unsuitable investments from 2005 through 2018 and negligence, breach of fiduciary duty, misrepresentations, and common law fraud concerning alternative investments.  The claim alleged $142,026 in damages and the claim is currently pending.

In December 2015 a customer filed a complaint alleging that Hines violated the securities laws by alleging negligence, misrepresentations, concerning alternative investments.  The claim alleged $340,000 in damages and settled for $100,000.

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shutterstock_145368937-300x225The securities lawyers of Gana Weinstein LLP continue to report on non-traded real estate investment trust (Non-Traded REIT) and investor loss recovery options.  According to First Capital REIT’s website the fhe company claims that “when you invest with First Capital Real Estate Trust Incorporated you join those investors who benefit from the dual strategy that makes our REIT stand out from our competitors. We focus on acquiring existing stabilized cash-flowing assets to support stable, consistent distributions to our stockholders.”

However, the company has subsequently reported that multiple investments that First Capital REIT made have filed a voluntary petition for relief in Bankruptcy Court.  Thereafter, the company in November 2016, sought to protect cash.  It’s been reported that First Capital REIT was failing to pay employees on time and missed filing financial statements with the SEC for more than a year.  According secondary market estimates on the value of First Capital REIT the company’s shares have traded at just $4.90/share or over a 50% loss from the $10.00/share offering price.

Our firm handles where brokers recommend investments in direct participation products (DPPs), private placements, Non-Traded REITs, and other alternative investments.  These products are almost always unsuitable for middle class investors.  In addition, the brokers who sell them are paid additional commission in order to hype inferior quality investments providing perverse incentives for brokers to sell high risk and low reward investments.

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shutterstock_176283941-300x200The securities lawyers of Gana Weinstein LLP are investigating investor losses in VII Peaks Co-Optivist Income BDC II (Peaks Co-Optivist) a business development company (BDC).  According to the company’s SEC filings, Peaks Co-Optivist invests in discounted corporate debt, senior secured term loan and equity-linked debt securities of public and private companies that trade on the secondary loan market for institutional investors and provide distributions to investors.  Peaks Co-Optivist seeks to actively work with the target company’s management to restructure the underlying securities and improve the liquidity position of the target company’s balance sheet.  This strategy targets company management on average 24 months prior to a redemption event to create an opportunity for growth in the investments.

Because Peaks Co-Optivist in non-traded product there are no market pricing for the value of the securities.  The company issued shares at a price of $10.15 per share but due to fees and commissions of $1.015 only $9.135 was used to make investments.  Currently, the company claims that its shares are worth $8.75 per share.  However, this is highly unlikely given that the company has financed most of its distributions through returning investor capital and currently has a distribution rate of only 2.23% annualized.

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shutterstock_29356093-300x214Former Titan Securities advisor Walter Parker (Parker) has been subject to at least eight customer complaints.  According to a BrokerCheck report many of the customer complaints concern alternative investments and direct participation products (DPPs) such as non-traded real estate investment trusts (REITs), oil & gas programs, annuities, and equipment leasing programs.  The attorneys at Gana Weinstein LLP have extensive experience handling investor losses caused by these types of products.

In addition, in April 2018 FINRA suspended and sanctioned Parker alleging that he made investment recommendations to a customer that were not suitable given her age, risk tolerance, financial experience and liquidity. FINRA found that the customer had little prior experience investing and no experience investing in alternative investments. FINRA alleged that Parker recommended that the customer invest her funds into illiquid, alternative investments and that the customer suffered significant losses in the alternative investments. Due to her investment losses the client was forced to obtain full-time employment.

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shutterstock_183544004-300x200Money Concepts Capital Corp (Money Concepts) advisor Ray Reese (Reese) has been subject to at least three customer complaints.  According to a BrokerCheck report many of the customer complaints concern variable annuities or alternative investments and direct participation products (DPPs) such as non-traded real estate investment trusts (REITs), oil & gas programs, annuities, and equipment leasing programs.  The attorneys at Gana Weinstein LLP have extensive experience handling investor losses caused by these types of products.

In May 2018 a client alleged that Reese misrepresented the product as they were not informed it was not publicly traded and therefore illiquid.  The client alleged damages of $75,000 and the complaint was denied by the firm.

In May 2018 another client filed a dispute alleging unsuitability, negligence, breach of contract, and breaches of Missouri statutes in connection with the loss of assets they deposited for a whole life insurance policy.  The claim is currently pending and seeks $650,000 in damages.

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