The Financial Industry Regulatory Authority (FINRA) has permanently barred broker Mark Christopher Hotton (Hotton) alleging that the broker engaged in numerous and repeated frauds including forgery, falsification of documents, conversion, misuse of funds, manipulating account records, churning, unauthorized trading, false testimony, and providing false information and documents to FINRA.
FINRA alleged that starting from at least 2006, Hotton engaged in numerous fraudulent investment schemes to steal at least $5,932,000 from his brokerage customers. FINRA admitted that due to the complexity of the fraud that it had not been able to track down Hotton’s entire use and receipt of ill-gotten funds. According to FINRA, Hotton converted funds from his customers by using his control over the bank accounts of various corporate entities to divert funds that his customers believed were being invested in legitimate businesses.
Fom November 2002 until November 2005, Hotton was associated with Ladenburg, Thalmann & Co., Inc., From November 2005 until February 2009, Hotton was associated with Oppenheimer & Co., Inc. (Oppenheimer). While at Oppenheimer, Hotton focused on clients with an average net worth of between $1,000,000 and $20,000,000. Thereafter, Hotton was a registered representative of American Capital Partners, LLC until August 2010. From September 2010 until March 2012, Hotton was associated with Alexander Capital, L.P. Finally, from February 2012 until May 2012, Hutton was associated with Obsidian Financial Group, LLC. Obsidian terminated Hotton’s registration on May 31, 2012.