Berthel Fisher Fined $775,000 by FINRA for Sale of Oil & Gas Investments and Other Alternative Investments

In February 2014, the Industry Regulatory Authority (FINRA) fined Berthel Fisher & Company Financial Services and its affiliate, Securities Management & Research of Marion, Ohio, $775,000 for supervisory deficiencies, including Berthel Fisher’s failure to supervise the sale of alternative investments, including:

  • non-traded real estate investment trusts (REITs)
  • leveraged and inverse exchange traded funds (ETFs)
  • managed futures
  • oil and gas programs
  • equipment leasing programs
  • business development companies
FINRA found that from January 2008 to December 2012, Berthel Fisher had inadequate supervisory systems and written supervisory procedures for the sales of alternative investments .
It was also found that some investors were sold these investments in too high a level of concentration making them unsuitable.
Follow this to read FINRA’s February 24, 2014, press release on this sanction of Berthel Fisher.
March 2014– Rex Securities Law files FINRA arbitration vs. Berthel Fisher seeking damages related to sale of alternative investments to retired single lady from St. Paul, MN.
If you have losses on alternative investments, including oil and gas investments,  purchased from Berthel Fisher, you may be able to recover all or a part of those losses. Call us to discuss your legal rights with an experienced securities attorney.

Rex Securities Law , with offices in Boca Raton, FL,  and  Austin, TX,   provides representation to  investors  nationwide who are seeking recovery of investment losses due to the negligence or fraud of stockbrokers and broker dealers. If you have questions about how your account has been handled, call to speak with an experienced securities attorney.

Most cases handled on a contingent fee basis meaning that you do not pay legal fees unless we are successful.

Nationwide Representation

Rex Securities Law

TollFree: 877-224-3199

Florida-561 391 1900 

Texas-512-329-2870

 

Heidi Wivolin Terminated by NEXT Financial Group

By Robert H. Rex, Esq. 

According to FINRA records NEXT Financial Group discharged broker Heidi Wivolin on February 6, 2014. The termination comment indicates Wivolin was “discharged” for “failure to cooperate with internal investigation“. 

We have been investigating Heidi Wivolin, NEXT FInancial Group, 1st Discount Brokerage and Shawn O’Sullivan since early February on behalf of a group of Finnish citizens who for many years entrusted Wivolin and the brokerage firms she worked for with millions of dollars with the belief their funds were invested in a bond portfolio. 

Wivolin and O’Sullivan, who operated a company called FirsTrust Investments from the NEXT Financial office in Manalapan, Florida,  have admitted to our client that there was no bond portfolio and that the funds were lost in various unauthorized investments and used to pay the living expenses of Wivolin and O’Sullivan as well as the operating expenses of the NEXT Financial office. 

On February 19, 2014, suit was filed in Palm Beach County Circuit Court against NEXT Financial and Wivolin. See this  and this for more information. 

We are also assisting another victim of this apparent fraud from Lantana, Florida, who alleges she was encouraged by Wivolin  to make a six figure loan to O’Sullivan with the promise of tax free interest in an insured investment. Monthly payments were made for a period of time but have now ceased. 

If you have questions about an account which was handled by Wivolin, contact us to speak with an experienced securities attorney to discuss your legal options. 

Nationwide representation.


561 391 1900

NSM Securities Hit with $187,000 Arbitration Award

By Robert H. Rex,  Esq. 

A FINRA arbitration panel in Orlando, Florida, just ordered NSM Securities and two of its brokers to pay damages in excess of $187,000 to resolve the claims of an investor who brought an action for unauthorized and unsuitable transactions of speculative trading of stocks on margin. The stocks included Drexion ETF, SOHU.com, Amazon and Netflix. 

The arbitration panel found that NSM Securities and their brokers Niyukt Raghu Bhasin and Arun Raghuveer Kapse were jointly and severally liable for common law breach of contract, negligence and recklessness. The panel awarded interest at the rate of 4.75% from October 27. 2011, but denied the claimant’s request for punitive damages and attorney fees. Vishnu Yelamanchi v NSM Securities, Inc. et al, FINRA Case #12-3702. 

If you have questions about the way your investment account is being handled, call for a no charge consultation with an experienced securities attorney to learn more about your rights. 

Nationwide representation


561 391 1900

Next Financial – Heidi Wivolin lakijutun päivitys

19. helmikuuta . 2014 , Mrachek , Fitzgerald , Rose , Konopka Thomas & Weiss West Palm Beach , FL , ja Dickenson Murphy Rex & Sloan Boca Raton , FL , on tehnyt muodollisen valituksen FINRAan, rekisteröidyn arvopaperiyhtiön NEXT Financial Services ja paikallisen asukkaan Heidi Wivolinin toimista.  Wivolin on rekisteröity NEXT’in pörssivälittäjä .

Tapauksessa PASI MARTIN , CITY -Rakennus MARTIN OY ,ulkomainen yksikkö , CITY – Air Oy ,ulkomainen yksikkö , GPW INTERNATIONAL , INC. ,ulkomainen yksikkö; JALKARANNAN Kauppakeskus OY ,ulkomainen yksikkö , ja OCTOPUS GROUP INTERNATIONAL , INC. ,Florida yhtiö vs. Next Financial Group, Inc. ,Texas yhtiö , ja HEIDI WIVOLIN, asia # 2014a002961XXXXMBAD , on jätetty Circuit Court of the Fifteenth Judicial Circuit ja Palm Beach County , Florida tuomiokuntaan.

Tapauksessa haetaan vahingonkorvauksia yli 15000 dollarin edestä Pasi Martinin ,Suomen kansalainen , toisen Suomen kansalaisen ja useiden muiden suomalaisten ja Florida yhteisöjen puolesta . Kantelussa väitetään , että vuodesta 2009 , Martin ja hänen kanssakantajansa uskoivat miljoonia dollareita Next Financial Group’ille pörssimeklari Wivolinin välityksellä, joka toimi toimistossaan Manalapanissa, Floridassa . Kantajille kerrottiin, että varat oli sijoitettu kunnallisiin obligaatioihin.

Äskettäin Wivolin ja Shawn O’Sullivan , jotka operoivat FirsTrust Investment yhtiötä samasta toimistosta kuin Next Financial, myönsivät Martinille , että  kunnallisten obligaatioiden lainasalkkua ei ollut olemassakaan ja että kaikki rahat oli menetetty useihin luvattomiin investointeihin.

Kantelu väittää lisäksi, että Wivolin, joka puhuu sujuvasti suomea ja on hyvin tunnettu jäsen Lake Worth’in  suomalaisessa yhteisössä, käytti tätä seikkaa hyväkseeen johtaakseen Martinin, joka ei puhu englantia, harhaan.

 http://www.iltalehti.fi/uutiset/2014092918703979_uu.shtml

On odotettavissa, että lisää vastaajia voidaan nimetä lähitulevaisuudessa .

Valtakunnallinen edustus .

Rex Securities Law

561-391-1900

Update on NEXT Financial – Heidi Wivolin Litigation-Suit Filed vs. NEXT Financial Group/Wivolin

By Robert H. Rex, Esq. 

 
On February 19. 2014, Mrachek, Fitzgerald, Rose, Konopka Thomas & Weiss of West Palm Beach, FL, and Dickenson Murphy Rex & Sloan of Boca Raton, FL, filed a complaint against FINRA registered broker-dealer NEXT Financial Services and local resident Heidi Wivolin,  a registered broker with NEXT. 
 
The case , PASI MARTIN; CITY-RAKENNUS MARTIN OY, a foreign entity; CITY-AIR OY, a foreign entity; GPW INTERNATIONAL, INC. , a foreign entity; JALKARNNAN KAUPPAKESKUS OY, a foreign entity; and OCTOPUS GROUP INTERNATIONAL, INC. , a Florida corporation vs. NEXT FINANCIAL GROUP, INC. , a Texas corporation, and HEIDI WIVOLIN, Case # 2014a002961XXXXMBAD, was filed in the Circuit Court of the Fifteenth Judicial Circuit in and for Palm Beach County, Florida. 


The case seeks damages in excess of $15,000 on behalf of Pasi Martin, a Finnish citizen, another Finnish citizen and several other Finnish and Florida entities. The complaint alleges that since 2009, Martin and his co-plaintiffs entrusted millions of dollars to NEXT Financial, through their broker/agent Wivolin, which operated an office in Manalapan, FL. The Plaintiffs were told the funds were invested in municipal bonds. 

Recently Wivolin and Shawn O’Sullivan, who operated FirsTrust Investments from the same location as the NEXT Financial office, admitted to Martin that the purported municipal bond portfolio was actually a fiction and that all the monies had been lost in a number of unauthorized investments.

The complaint further alleges that Wivolin, who is fluent in Finnish and a well known member of the Lake Worth Finnish community, capitalized on that fact to mislead Mr. Martin, who does not speak English. 

It is anticipated that other defendants may be named in the near future. 
 
Nationwide representation.


561-391-1900

RSL Investigates Berthel Fisher Broker Jonathan Pyne

By Robert H. Rex, Esq. 

Rex Securities Law is investigating Berthel Fisher & Company Financial Services broker Jonathan Pyne on behalf of a retiree from the Minneapolis, MN area. Our client was sold the following alternative investments: 

  • Gulf Coast Rig & Equipment
  • Reef Income & Development
  • Leaf Equipment Leasing Fund
  • Inland American
  • Cornerstone Properties (now Summit Health Care)
  • Columbia Properties
We anticipate filing an arbitration claim with the Financial Industry Regulatory Authority (FINRA) in the near future on behalf of our client seeking recovery of damages for misrepresentation, unsuitable investments, breach of contract, negligent supervision and breach of fiduciary duty. 

According to FINRA records Jonanthan Pyne has been registered with Berthel Fisher & Company since February 2007. He was previously registered with: 

  • United Planners Financial Services of America 8/2003-2/2007
  • Clearing Services of America 8/1999-9/2003
According to FINRA records, Mr. Pyne is also associated with Evergreen Financial Group of Minneapolis. 

According to FINRA records Berthel Fisher & Company Financial Services, Inc. discloses 22 final regulatory matters and 9 customer arbitrations. Several of these disclosure items relate to unsuitable investments. Visit the FINRA BrokerCheck website for complete details. 

UPDATE FEBRUARY 2014-FINRA FINES BERTHEL FISHER $775,000 FOR SUPERVISORY INADEQUACIES IN CONNECTION WITH THE SALE OF ALTERNATIVE INVESTMENTS. See this for more information. 

If you have information you feel would be helpful to this investigation, we would appreciate hearing from you. 

Nationwide representation


561 391 1900

Florida Certified Financial Planners Disciplined by CFP Board-Oct. 2016 UPDATE

According to their website, the “Certified Financial Planner (CFP) Board is a non-profit organization acting in the public interest by fostering professional standards in personal financial planning through its setting and enforcement of the education, examination, experience, ethics and other requirements for CFP. “

The CFP Board can discipline those holding the CFP title in one of three ways:

  • Public Letter of Admonition
  • Temporary Suspension of CFP certification
  • Revocation of individual’s CFP certification

The list below, taken from the CFP board disciplinary page of their website in OCTOBER 2016 , is the currently published record of  Florida individuals who have been disciplined by CFP Board and does not imply that any listed discipline is currently in force. To verify an individual’s current certification status visit the CFP website here.

Administrative Revocations
Marc H. Baldinger (Stuart)

Joseph M. Browne (Jacksonville Beach)
Jamie D. Pope (Winter Park)
Ronald W. Vaught (Melbourne)

Revocations
Carol M. Allen (Deland)
Diane L. Barriga (Parkland)
Kenneth W. Brown (Ocean Ridge/Boca Raton)
Scott Browning (Tampa)
Richard N. Davis (Tampa)
Charles E. Foy (Saint Augustine)
Gregory L. Fuhrman (Englewood)
Jay J. Gelfenbaum (Coral Springs)
Robert N. Gest Jr. (Lighthouse Point)
Joseph E. Giewartowski (Orlando)
Thomas J. Gregory (Maitland)
Gail G. Griseuk (Saint Petersburg)
Robert Gutner (Boynton Beach)
Robert Hedges (Deerfield Beach)
Kirk F. Henderson (North Palm Beach)
Thomas S. Jackman (Cape Coral)
Robert C. Jensen (Miami Lakes)
Mark P. Koestner (Naples)
David J. Kury (Coral Springs/Lake Butler)
Richard J. Lanigan (Laurel/Port Charlotte)
Thomas R. Lomas (Longwood)
Ramona V. MacKinnon (Naples/Tallahassee)
Clifford W. Maher (Fort Lauderdale)
Marcus R. Michles (Winter Park)
Allen R. Montgomery (Lakeland)
Blake S. Murray (Deland/Lake Mary)
Robert J. Nies (Saint Petersburg)
Mark E. Nichols (Naples)
Carl W. Nolting (Fort Lauderdale)
Robert J. Papolos (Tallahassee)
Aaron R. Parthemer (Fort Lauderdale)
Bruce Pivar (Naples)
Nicholas J. Ruggeri (Clearwater)
Craig P. Scanlon (Madeira Beach)
Brenda M. Scott (Belleair/Clearwater)
David E. Sears (Nokomis)
C. Douglas Sedlak (Boca Raton)
Brian J. Sheen (Boca Raton)
Neal S. Smalbach (Palm Harbor)
Donald C. Smith (University Park)
Sandee G. Tanner (Brooksville)
Steven W. Taylor (Stuart)
Frederic W. Tokars (Palm Beach)
David E. Trotter, Sr. (Windermere)
Glen R. Walker (Pinellas Park/Tampa)
Pearlena Wallace (West Palm Beach)
Michael J. Wells (Winter Park)
Richard I. Weise (Naples)
Samuel L. Williams (Lake Worth/Boca Raton)

Denial of CFP® Certification
Christopher V. Eardley (Ocala)

Suspensions
Fred J. Anderson (Lehigh Acres)
Juan Jose Barberis (Jacksonville)
W. Steve Brown (Jacksonville)
Jeffrey Cimbal (Parkland)
Melvyn D. Cohen (Lake Worth)
Adam S. Deane (Naples)
James B. Evans (Clearwater)
Mario J. Ferrari (Boca Raton)
Kenneth A. Friedman (Jacksonville)
Michael C. Gainer (Jacksonville Beach)
Larry L. Galantis (Saint Petersburg)
Frederick G. Gartz (Naples)
Henry T. Goode (Melbourne)
Michael Hanke (Lutz)
Larry C. Hill (Boca Raton)
Scott D. Krause (Windemere)
Robert D. Lovett (Coral Springs)
Andrew W. MacGill (Tampa)
Lynne Marcus (Boynton Beach)
Bernard E. Ribordy (Seminole)
T. “Jerry” Royer (Altamonte Springs)
Riad Shanawany (Tamarac)
Jason E. Stephens (Naples)
Lewis N. Waltzer (Sanibel)
William G. Whitcomb (Fort Myers)
Bruce E. Winter (Boca Raton)
Mark N. Wright (Sarasota)
Herman W. Yurman (Saint Petersburg)

Interim Suspensions
Diane L. Barriga (Parkland)
Brian G. Doherty (Naples)
Jamie D. Pope (Winter Park)
Neal S. Smalbach (Palm Harbor)
Ronald W. Vaught (Melbourne)
William G. Whitcomb (Fort Myers)

Letters of Admonition
James A. Barry, Jr. (Highland Beach)
Jason K. Chepenik (Winter Park)
Robin S. Davis (Stuart)
Duncan C. DeWahl (Maitland)
Nathaniel Goldenberg (Tampa)
Kirk L. Gravelle (Jacksonville)
Richard Happle (Tampa)
William R. Hutchisson, Jr. (Palm Harbor/Clearwater)
Robert R. Liggero (Atlantic Beach)
Mark A. Lurz (Bradenton)
Matthew E. Marone (St. Petersburg)
Thomas W. Markowsky (Orlando)
William F. Perkins (Tarpon Springs)
Richard T. Salter (Boynton Beach/Juno Beach)
C. Douglas Sedlak (Boca Raton)
Steve I. Shrago (Sun City Center)
Russell Bruce Simmons (Tampa)
Christopher F. Wendland (Fort Myers)
Robert G. Yarbrough (Ormond Beach)
William P. Yurkovac (Naples)

Investors who have suffered damages as a result of the negligence or fraud of their stock broker, investment adviser or brokerage firm may be able to recover all or a part of those losses through FINRA arbitration.

Rex Securities Law , with offices in Boca Raton, FL,  and  Austin, TX,   provides representation to  investors  nationwide who are seeking recovery of investment losses due to the negligence or fraud of stockbrokers and broker dealers. If you have questions about how your account has been handled, call to speak with an experienced securities attorney.

Most cases handled on a contingent fee basis meaning that you do not pay legal fees unless we are successful.

Nationwide Representation

Rex Securities Law

TollFree: 877-224-3199

Florida-561 391 1900 

Texas-512-329-2870