Articles Tagged with investment fraud attorney

shutterstock_102242143-300x169According to BrokerCheck records financial advisor John Forrester (Forrester), currently employed by Newbridge Securities Corporation (Newbridge Securities) has been subject to at least four customer complaints, one regulatory action, and has two bankruptcy disclosures during the course of his career.  According to records kept by The Financial Industry Regulatory Authority (FINRA), Forrester’s customer complaints allege that Forrester recommended unsuitable securities recommendations in a variety of products including alternative investments among other allegations of misconduct in the handling of customer accounts.

In April 2019 a customer filed a complaint alleging that Forrester violated the securities laws by, among other things, that Forrester breached his fiduciary duty and was negligent in the sale of alternative investments causing $55,000 in damages.  The claim is currently pending.

In June 2017 Forrester declared bankruptcy.  This information has been found to be material for investors to have because an advisor who cannot manage his own finances is a relevant factor for investors to consider.  In addition, a broker in financial distress may be influenced to recommend high commission products or strategies.

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shutterstock_102217105-300x200According to BrokerCheck records financial advisor John Busco (Busco), currently employed by Laidlaw & Company (UK) Ltd. (Laidlaw) and previously with Morgan Stanley has been subject to at least 11 customer complaints and one regulatory action during the course of his career.  According to records kept by The Financial Industry Regulatory Authority (FINRA), Busco’s customer complaints allege that Busco recommended unsuitable securities recommendations in a variety of products including alternative investments among other allegations of misconduct in the handling of customer accounts.

In March 2019 a customer filed a complaint alleging that Busco violated the securities laws by, among other things, that Busco made unsuitable investments in alternative investments from 2009 through 2018 causing damages.  The claim is currently pending.

In April 2011 a customer filed a complaint alleging that Busco violated the securities laws by, among other things, that Busco made unsuitable investments in Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac causing $120,000 in damages.  The claim settled for $40,000.

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shutterstock_152933045-300x200According to BrokerCheck records financial advisor Leonard Kinsman (Kinsman), currently employed by Wells Fargo Advisors Network, LLC (Wells Fargo) has been subject to at least five customer complaints during the course of his career.  According to records kept by The Financial Industry Regulatory Authority (FINRA), Kinsman’s customer complaints allege that Kinsman recommended unsuitable securities recommendations among other allegations of misconduct in the handling of customer accounts.

In addition, a recent Washington Post article exposed how brokerage firms as large as Wells Fargo still hire brokers with troubling work histories.  Kinsman had prior multiple complaints from clients and worked for two banned brokerages firms.  One firm was Meyers Pollock Robbins, a notorious bucket shop whose ex-president pleaded guilty to charges of engaging in a pump-and-dump stock scheme.  The fraud was alleged to have been linked to a bribery scheme coordinated by organized crime.

Recently, Kinsman was the subject to a new customer complaint where the client accused the broker of losing a $2.25 million insurance settlement after the client’s husband died unexpectedly in 2011.  The complaint alleges aggressive options trading and false documentation.

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shutterstock_113632177-300x249According to BrokerCheck records financial advisor Peter Goffin (Goffin), currently employed by Newbridge Securities Corporation (Newbridge Securities) has been subject to at least nine customer complaints and one regulatory action during the course of his career.  According to records kept by The Financial Industry Regulatory Authority (FINRA), Goffin’s customer complaints allege that Goffin recommended unsuitable securities recommendations in a variety of products including alternative investments among other allegations of misconduct in the handling of customer accounts.

In March 2019 a customer filed a complaint alleging that Goffin violated the securities laws by, among other things, that Goffin breached his fiduciary duty and was negligent in the sale of alternative investments causing $150,000 in damages.  The claim is currently pending.

In January 2012 a customer filed a complaint alleging that Goffin violated the securities laws by, among other things, that Goffin made unsuitable investments in a variable annuity causing $30,000 in damages.  The claim was denied.

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shutterstock_132317306-300x200The law offices of Gana Weinstein LLP are currently investigating multiple claims that advisor Michael Mackay (Mackay) has engaged in the sale products not approved by his brokerage firm.  Mackay, formerly registered with Transamerica Financial Advisors, Inc. (Transamerica) out of Cincinnati, Ohio has been accused by at least one customer of engaging in unapproved activity.  In addition, Mackay disclosed that he has several tax liens totaling over $50,000.

In January 2019 Transamerica terminated Mackay after alleging that the firm received allegations from two customers that the Mackay had referred them to an outside investment opportunity that was not approved by the firm.

Mackay’s FINRA disclosures state that Mackay has several outside business activities including Mackay & Associates, The Homexchange, and WFG.

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shutterstock_94632238-300x214The law offices of Gana Weinstein LLP are currently investigating multiple claims that advisor Edward Matthes (Matthes) has engaged in a misappropriation scheme.  Matthes, formerly registered with Mutual of Omaha Investor Services, Inc. (Mutual of Omaha) and operating out of Oconomowoc, Wisconsin, has been accused by more than 10 customers of engaging in securities fraud and misappropriating their funds.

In March 2019, Mutual of Omaha terminated Matthes employment stating that Matthes was discharged for creating fictitious account statements and diverting customer funds for his own personal use.  Also in March of 2019 the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) opened an investigation into Matthes for alleged misappropriation of funds.  Since then over ten customers have filed complaints alleging that Matthes misappropriated funds by diverting assets into his own bank account and created fictitious account statements.

Our law firm has significant experience bringing cases on behalf of defrauded victims when their advisors engage in misappropriation schemes.  Matthes activities in the sale of unapproved investment products – is a practice known in the industry as “selling away” – a serious violation of the securities laws.  In the industry the term selling away refers to when a financial advisor solicits investments in companies, promissory notes, or other securities that are not pre-approved by the broker’s affiliated firm.  Sometimes those investments have some legitimacy but often times these types of investments can end up being Ponzi schemes or the advisor can be engaging in the conversion of funds.

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shutterstock_120556300-300x300According to BrokerCheck records financial advisor Brian Thomas (Thomas), currently employed by Harbor Financial Services, LLC (Harbor Financial) has been subject to at least six customer complaints during the course of his career.  According to records kept by The Financial Industry Regulatory Authority (FINRA), Thomas’ customer complaints allege that Thomas recommended unsuitable investments and securities among other allegations.

In July 2017 a customer filed a complaint alleging that Thomas violated the securities laws by, among other things, made unsuitable investments, excessive and unauthorized trading resulting in damages from April 2015 through March 2017. The claim settled for $15,000.

In September 2011 a customer filed a complaint alleging that Thomas violated the securities laws by, among other things, breaching his fiduciary duty, negligence, and breach of contract from 1996 through November 2011.  The claim alleged $100,000 in damages and resulted in a settlement of $75,000.

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shutterstock_34872913-300x209According to BrokerCheck records financial advisor Ronald Rothchild (Rothchild), currently employed by National Securities Corporation (National Securities) has been subject to at least four customer complaint, two financial disclosures, and an employment termination for cause.  According to records kept by The Financial Industry Regulatory Authority (FINRA), most of Rothchild’s customer complaints allege that Rothchild made was negligent, breached his fiduciary duty, made unsuitable investments, and made misrepresentations.

In July 2018 a customer filed a complaint alleging that Rothchild violated the securities laws including negligence, breach of fiduciary duty, and unsuitable investments causing $100,000 in damages.  The claim is currently pending.

In March 2018 a customer filed a complaint alleging that Rothchild violated the securities laws including that investments were misrepresented to her and were unsuitable based on her investment objectives and risk tolerance which were also incorrectly stated on new account paperwork.  The claim is currently settled.

In December 2016 a customer filed a complaint alleging that Rothchild violated the securities laws including negligence, breach of fiduciary duty, and misrepresentations causing $170,000 in damages.  The claim is settled for $48,000.

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shutterstock_177577832-300x300According to BrokerCheck records financial advisor Gregory Williams (Williams), currently employed by Presidential Brokerage, Inc. (Presidential Brokerage) has been subject to four customer complaints.  According to records kept by The Financial Industry Regulatory Authority (FINRA), most of Williams’ customer complaints allege that Williams made unsuitable recommendations in a variety of investments.

In June 2018 a customer complained that Williams violated the securities laws by engaging in unsuitable investments and making misrepresentations.  The customer alleges $151,337 in damages.  The claim is currently pending.

In June 2018 a customer complained that Williams violated the securities laws by engaging in unsuitable investments, making misrepresentations, making unauthorized transfers, fraud, and breach of fiduciary duty from May 2012 through March 2018.  The customer alleges $1,200,000 in damages.  The claim is currently pending.

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shutterstock_135103109-300x200According to BrokerCheck records kept by The Financial Industry Regulatory Authority (FINRA) advisor George McCaffrey (McCaffrey), formerly associated with NTB Financial Corporation (NTB Financial), in September 2018, was sanctioned and suspended from the securities industry by FINRA over accusations of potentially selling unapproved products.

In September 2018 FINRA alleged that McCaffrey consented to the sanctions and findings that he participated in 22 undisclosed private securities transactions in which nine investors purchased $1,775,000 in debt and equity securities. FINRA found that McCaffrey introduced the nine individuals to representatives of a greenhouse building and leasing company so they could invest in the company. Other activities McCaffrey is alleged to have performed include reviewing and editing documents relating to the investments, forwarding investment-related documents to the customers, and communicating with the customers about their investments.

The investors were found to have purchased $1,775,000 in promissory notes of the greenhouse building and leasing company and preferred stock in one of the company’s affiliates. FINRA also found that the company paid $124,250 in commissions to an entity controlled by McCaffrey’s wife.

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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