Articles Tagged with capital financial Services

shutterstock_188631644-300x225As we have previously reported, according to BrokerCheck records financial advisor William Byrd (Byrd) had several customer complaints filed against him in connection with his management of client accounts.  Byrd is currently employed by B.B. Graham & Company, Inc. (BB Graham) and now been subject to at least five customer complaints and one civil lien for $47,782.23.  According to records kept by The Financial Industry Regulatory Authority (FINRA), Byrd’s customer complaints allege that Byrd recommended unsuitable securities recommendations among other allegations of misconduct in the handling of customer accounts.

In March 2019 a customer filed a complaint alleging that Byrd violated the securities laws by engaging in, among other violations, unsuitable concentrated mutual fund transactions and products, and lacking any reasonable investment strategy.  The claim alleges $300,000 and is currently pending.

In October 2018 a civil judgement was entered against Byrd.  Large tax liens, civil judgement, or bankruptcy filings 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_7947664-300x200The law offices of Gana Weinstein LLP are investigating claims against advisor Lloyd Johnston (Johnston).  According to records kept by The Financial Industry Regulatory Authority (FINRA), Johnston, formerly registered with Capital Financial Services, Inc. (Capital Financial) out of Spokane, Washington was barred from the financial industry.  According to a BrokerCheck report,  Johnston has been subject to at least two customer complaints, four regulatory actions, two investigations, one bankruptcy disclosure, one termination, and 15 tax liens.  Johnston’s customer complaints allege that Johnston engaged in unsuitable sales of 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 handed many cases with these types of investments causing investor losses.

In September 2018 Johnston failed to disclose or timely disclose tax liens with a balance exceeding $1,000,000 and violated the terms of a Conditional Registration Order, which resulted in the revocation of his license.  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.

In May 2018 Johnston failed to respond to FINRA’s request for information and was suspended indefinitely.

In May 2018 a customer alleged that Johnston’s sales of alternative investments were unsuitable to the customer’s investment needs.  The exact amount of damages cannot be determined.  The claim settled for $35,000.

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shutterstock_103681238-300x300Advisor William Gordon (Gordon), currently employed by Capital Financial Services, Inc. (Capital Financial) has been subject to at least 13 customer complaints and one regulatory complaint.  According to a BrokerCheck report most of the customer complaints concern alternative investments and direct participation products (DPPs) such as private placements, tenants-in-common trusts, 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 January 2019 a customer filed a complaint alleging that Gordon violated the securities laws including unsuitability, misrepresentation and omissions, and breach of fiduciary duty causing $200,000 in damages.  The claim is currently pending.

In January 2013 a customer filed a complaint alleging that Gordon violated the securities laws including unsuitability causing $300,964 in damages.  The claim settled.

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shutterstock_182053859-300x200According to BrokerCheck records kept by The Financial Industry Regulatory Authority (FINRA) advisor Michael Olinde (Olinde), currently associated with Capital Financial Services, Inc. (Capital Financial), in May 2017, was discharged from his employer LPL Financial LLC (LPL) due to allegations that he violated the firm’s policies regarding outside business activities.  Thereafter, according to Olinde’s BrokerCheck, Olinde has been subject to a FINRA investigation regarding his outside business activity.

Engaging in undisclosed outside business activities represents a risk to brokerage firms that the advisor may be engaging in unmonitored securities related businesses.  The providing of loans or selling of notes and other investments outside of a brokerage firm constitutes impermissible private securities transactions – a practice known in the industry as “selling away”.

In this case it is unclear what sort of business activities Olinde was engaged in.  However, his disclosures include many businesses including: 1) Olinde Brothers Properties – a commercial building partnership; 2) Olinde Financial Group – his d/b/a for brokerage activity; 3) Olinde Investment Holdings LLC; 4) The Massad Olinde Group; 5) Alpha Consulting Group; 6) Prciniple Matters, LLC – a radio program; 7) Avive Nutraceuticals, LLC – partner and board member; 8) Olinde Management, LLC – resendential properties rentals; 9) K & M Olinde Farms; 10) M202 – real estate business.

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shutterstock_160304408-300x199According to BrokerCheck records kept by The Financial Industry Regulatory Authority (FINRA) advisor Sean Kelly (Kelly), in October 2018, was accused by the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) of stealing more than $1 million from his clients.

According to the SEC, Sean Kelly used his companies, Lion’s Share Financial of East Cobb, Inc., Lion’s Share & Associates, Inc., and Lionsshare Tax Services, LLC, (Lion Share) to raise at least $1 million from 12 investors, including elderly retirees.  Kelley is accused of promising that he would invest investor funds in a variety of investment products including private placements and real estate funds.  However, the SEC determined that Kelly just spent the money on his own personal expenses including Super Bowl tickets, luxury vacations, and cash withdrawals. Apparently, even after he received an SEC subpoena Kelly continued to just steal money from investors.  Instead, the SEC alleged that Kelly continued to dodge the agency and did not show up for his scheduled testimony after informing the SEC’s staff that he would show up and “come clean.”  In a separate action, the U.S. Attorney’s Office for the Northern District of Georgia filed criminal charges against Kelly and arrested him.

The providing of loans or selling of notes and other investments outside of a brokerage firm constitutes impermissible private securities transactions – a practice known in the industry as “selling away”.

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shutterstock_29356093-300x214Former Capital Financial Services, Inc. (Capital Financial) and Questar Capital Corporation (Questar) broker Steven Knuttila (Knuttila) has been subject to at least 25 customer complaints, one employment terminations for cause, and two regulatory actions.  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 June 2018 FINRA barred Knuttila from the securities industry after he refused to appear for FINRA on-the-record testimony relating to an investigation into allegations that Knuttila made unsuitable recommendations to customers.  FINRA’s bar comes after a bar by Knuttila’s home State of Minnesota after it alleged that Knuttila sold numerous unsuitable investments to clients.  In addition, in 2012 Knuttila was terminated by Questar for failing to report customer complaints and wrongful use of discretion in client accounts.

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shutterstock_132704474-300x200The securities lawyers of Gana Weinstein LLP are investigating customer complaints filed with The Financial Industry Regulatory Authority’s (FINRA) against broker Swan Sihua Shen (Shen) also known as Swan Sihua Zhang. According to BrokerCheck records there are at least six disclosures on Shen’s record including customer complaints, multiple regulatory actions, and one employment separation from CUNA Brokerage Services.

The most recent regulatory action against Shen was filed by the Maine office of Securities in October 2016 alleging that she failed to disclose history records so as a result was ordered for heightened supervision for 2 years.

In February 2015, the State of Massachusetts filed a claim against Swan Shen alleging that she repeatedly violated firm policies by copying and pasting client signatures, and altering forms which was precipitated by her termination from CBS in August 2013.