Category Archives: Concentrated Positions

Investigation of Capital Financial Services Brokers-Mark & Herminia Sitter-The Woodlands, TX

August 2017- The Woodlands, Texas

We are investigating  Capital Financial Services stockbroker Mark Raymond Sitter of the Woodlands, TXand  his wife Herminia C. Sitter, who until June 2017, was also a  broker with Capital Financial Services TX.

Our investigation is on behalf of an elderly Texas retiree who alleges that they recommended she invest most of her retirement funds into unsuitable real estate investments, including American Realty Hospitality Trust and Cole Office and Industrial REIT.

The FINRA records of Mark Sitter disclose an outstanding lien to the Internal Revenue Service of $83,527. Mark Sitter has been registered with Capital Financial Services since 1/2006. Mark Sitter discloses a business affiliation with Chasewood Wealth Management of the Woodlands, TX.

The FINRA records of Herminia Sitter disclose an outstanding lien to the Internal Revenue Service of $83,527. Herminia Sitter was registered with Capital Financial Services from 9/2005-6/2017.

Capital Financial Services has been a FINRA member since 1981 and is headquartered in Minot, North Dakota.

If you have information you believe may be helpful to this investigation please contact our office.

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

Harold F. Martek Jr.-Centaurus FInancial Broker-Discloses Pending Customer Arbitration-Palm City, FL

April 2017- Palm City, FL

The FINRA records of  Harold F. Martek Jr. ,  a  stockbroker who is currently employed by  Centaurus Financial  disclose a pending customer dispute.

The Financial Industry Regulatory Authority (FINRA) is the agency that licenses and regulates stockbrokers and brokerage firms. FINRA requires brokers and brokerage firms to report customer complaints and disputes as well as regulatory sanctions. In addition brokers are required to disclose certain financial matters such as personal bankruptcies, judgments and liens.

In FINRA arbitration 17-01041 a customer of Centaurus Financial alleges damages of $60,000 for an unsuitable recommendation  to concentrate a portfolio in a single stock.

Martek has been employed by Centaurus Financial  since 9/2009. Prior to that he was employed by Securities America in Stuart, FL.

If you have questions about an account  handled by Harold Martek Jr.,  call for a no charge consultation.

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

Scott V. Kaup-Former VSR Financial Services Broker-Discloses $1M+ Customer Dispute-Stuart, NE

April 2017-Stuart, NE

The FINRA records of  Scott V. Kaup ,  a  stockbroker who was formerly  employed by  VSR Financial Services  disclose a pending customer dispute involving alternative investments.

The Financial Industry Regulatory Authority (FINRA) is the agency that licenses and regulates stockbrokers and brokerage firms. FINRA requires brokers and brokerage firms to report customer complaints and disputes as well as regulatory sanctions. In addition brokers are required to disclose certain financial matters such as personal bankruptcies, judgments and liens.

In currently pending FINRA Case 16-01088, a customer of VSR Financial Services alleges damages of between $1,000,000 and $5,000,000 for unsuitable recommendations, violation of common law fraud, breach of fiduciary duty and negligence for account activity between 3/2001-6/2010. The investments at issue are direct investments, &  limited partnership interests in oil and gas and real estate securities.

Kaup was employed by VSR FInancial Services from 10/1989-9/2016. He is currently employed by Summit Brokerage Services and discloses a business affiliation with Kaup’s Financial Advisors, Inc. 

VSR Financial Services was fined $550,000 by the Financial Industry Regulatory Authority (FINRA) in May 2013 in connection with the sale of alternative investments . In their findings, FINRA criticised VSR Financial for recommending high concentration levels of alternative investments in customer accounts and for its lack of supervision over the use of consolidated reports prepared by brokers and provided to customers.

Alternative investments include non publicly traded real estate investment trusts (REITS) , hedge funds, real estate, commodities and derivatives contracts and, managed futures. These investments tend to be complex, illiquid, nontransparent, hard to value and expensive. Many of the alternative investments sold over recent years are not traded on any public market making them difficult to value and even more difficult to liquidate if cash is needed.

 VSR wound down operations at the end of 2016 and transferred most of their brokers and customer accounts to Summit Brokerage ServicesSee this for more information regarding VSR Financial Services.

If you have losses in an account in an account handled by Scott V. Kaup or another broker who was employed by VSR Financial Services , contact us to discuss how you may be able to recover damages for those losses.

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

Dennis Van Patter-Former VSR Financial Services Broker-Discloses Pending Customer Disputes-Plano, TX

February  2017-Plano, Texas

According to public records former VSR Financial Services broker Dennis Van Patter discloses a prior final regulatory event, 7 prior customer disputes that are final and 3 pending customer disputes.

Five of the prior customer disputes were brought by Van Patter’s customers while he was employed by VSR Financial Services and allege damages related to investments in real estate investment trusts (REITs), oil and gas, equipment leasing and promissory notes (alternative investments). Settlements paid by VSR Financial in those five  cases are $40,000, $215,000, $11,250, $50,000 and $15,000.

The three pending cases against Van Patter are by customers of VSR Financial and relate to alternative investments such as REITs, oil and gas and equipment leasing. Damages sought in the two of the pending cases are not stated. Damages sought in the third case are $1,074,858.

In November of 2015 FINRA suspended Van Patter for 45 days and fined him $10,000. Without admitting or denying the findings, Van Patter consented to the entry of findings that his recommendation that a retired customer invest in alternative investments was not suitable in light of the customer’s investment objectives and risk tolerance. The findings stated that Van Patter recommended that the customer invest $1.6 million in alternative investments such as REITs, note programs, oil and gas drilling partnerships and other private placements. As a result of Van Patter’s recommendations, the customer had approximately 52% of his liquid net worth concentrated in high risk alternative investments. FINRA Case 2013036647401. 

See this for prior posts on Dennis Van Patter. 

VSR Financial’s Prior Issues with Alternative Investments

VSR Financial Services was fined $550,000 by the Financial Industry Regulatory Authority (FINRA) in May 2013 in connection with the sale of alternative investments. In their findings, FINRA criticised VSR Financial for recommending high concentration levels of alternative investments in customer accounts and for its lack of supervision over the use of consolidated reports prepared by brokers and provided to customers. During the summer of 2016, VSR Financial announced that they were winding down their brokerage business and transferring accounts and brokers to an affiliated entity Summit Brokerage Services.

See this for prior posts on VSR Financial Services.

Alternative investments include non publicly traded real estate investment trusts (REITS) , hedge funds, real estate, commodities and derivatives contracts and, managed futures. It may also include art, wine, antiques, coins or stamps. These investments tend to be complex, illiquid, nontransparent, hard to value and expensive. Many of the alternative investments sold over recent years are not traded on any public market making them difficult to value and even more difficult to liquidate if cash is needed.

Van Patter was employed by VSR FInancial  Services from 10/1997-7/2016. He is not currently registered with any broker dealer.

If you have losses in an account in an account handled by Dennis Van Patter or  another VSR Financial Services broker, contact us to discuss how you may be able to recover damages for those losses.

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

Stacey L. Rognon-IMS Securities Stockbroker-Discloses Customer Dispute-Houston, TX

January 2017-Houston, Texas

The FINRA records of  Stacey Lee Rognon,  a  stockbroker with IMS Securities disclose a  a currently pending customer dispute.

The Financial Industry Regulatory Authority (FINRA) is the agency that licenses and regulates stockbrokers and brokerage firms. FINRA requires brokers and brokerage firms to report customer complaints and disputes as well as regulatory sanctions. In addition brokers are required to disclose certain financial matters such as personal bankruptcies, judgments and liens.

In FINRA Case 16-01800 a customer of IMS Securities alleges damages of $3,000,000 for negligence , over concentration, misrepresentation and breach of fiduciary duty in connection with the investment in real estate investment trusts (REITs) and variable annuities.

Rognon has been registered with IMS Securities since August 2002.

If you have questions about an account in an account handled by Stacey L. Rognon , contact us to discuss your legal options.

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

Ronald Kudlacek-VSR Financial Services Broker-Discloses Settlement of Customer Dispute Involving Annuity

The FINRA records of  Ronald J. Kudlacek,  a  stockbroker who is currently  employed by  VSR Financial Services & Summit Brokerage Services disclose a prior customer dispute that has been resolved.

The Financial Industry Regulatory Authority (FINRA) is the agency that licenses and regulates stockbrokers and brokerage firms. FINRA requires brokers and brokerage firms to report customer complaints and disputes as well as regulatory sanctions. In addition brokers are required to disclose certain financial matters such as personal bankruptcies, judgments and liens.

Kudlacek , who operates Core + Financial Strategies in Houston, Texas discloses that  a complaint filed by a VSR Financial Services customer alleged damages of $550,000 in connection with the loss of guaranteed benefits on a variable annuity due to the fact an incorrect amount was withdrawn that exceeded the maximum withdrawal limit. That dispute was resolved by a settlement payment of $178,800 according to FINRA records.

Kudlacek has been registered with VSR Financial Services since 12/2010 and registered with Summit Brokerage Services since 9/2016. VSR Financial Services is in the process of winding down operations and transferring many of the brokers and customer accounts to a related entity, Summit Brokerage Services. See this for more information regarding VSR Financial Services.

VSR Financial Services was fined $550,000 by the Financial Industry Regulatory Authority (FINRA) in May 2013 in connection with the sale of alternative investments similar to United Development Funding. In their findings, FINRA criticised VSR Financial for recommending high concentration levels of alternative investments in customer accounts and for its lack of supervision over the use of consolidated reports prepared by brokers and provided to customers.

Alternative investments include non publicly traded real estate investment trusts (REITS) , hedge funds, real estate, commodities and derivatives contracts and, managed futures. It may also include art, wine, antiques, coins or stamps. These investments tend to be complex, illiquid, nontransparent, hard to value and expensive. Many of the alternative investments sold over recent years are not traded on any public market making them difficult to value and even more difficult to liquidate if cash is needed.

If you have losses in an account in an account handled by Ron Kudlacek or another broker who was employed by VSR Financial Services , contact us to discuss how you may be able to recover damages for those losses.

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

VSR Financial-Overland Park, KS, Brokerage Firm- Shutting Down Operations

November 3, 2016-Overland Park, KS

The Kansas City Star reports that VSR Financial, which has been in business since 1984, it shutting down and moving its brokers and customers to other related firms in the Cetera Financial Group.

VSR Financial had about 215 brokers in 58 branches nationwide.

VSR has had several significant regulatory issues to deal with in the recent years:

Alternative Investment Issue

In May 2013, VSR Financial Services was fined $550,000 by the Financial Industry Regulatory Authority (FINRA)  in connection with the sale of alternative investments similar to United Development Funding. In their findings, FINRA criticised VSR Financial for recommending high concentration levels of alternative investments in customer accounts and for its lack of supervision over the use of consolidated reports prepared by brokers and provided to customers.

Alternative investments include non publicly traded real estate investment trusts (REITS) , hedge funds, real estate, commodities and derivatives contracts and, managed futures. It may also include art, wine, antiques, coins or stamps. These investments tend to be complex, illiquid, nontransparent, hard to value and expensive. Many of the alternative investments sold over recent years are not traded on any public market making them difficult to value and even more difficult to liquidate if cash is needed.

For more information related to VSR Financial’s alternative investment issues, follow this link. 

Variable Annuity Sales Issue

In October 2016, VSR Financial was censured and fined $400,000 for various supervisory issues related to the sale of variable annuities to customers. Related entities Cetera Advisor Networks, Cetera Financial Specialists, First Allied Securities and Summit Brokerage Services were also sanctioned by FINRA for supervisory failures related to the sales of variable annuities.

Follow this link to 10/2016 VSR Financial FINRA Sanction for Variable Annuity Sales Violations

If you have losses in an account in an account at  VSR Financial Services , contact us to discuss how you may be able to recover damages for those losses.

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