Category Archives: FInancial Exploitation of the Elderly

Sanders Spangler’s Employer LPL Financial Named In Litigation Claim-Austin, TX

June 2017-Austin, TX

On behalf of a retired widow from the Austin, Texas area, Rex Securities Law recently filed a Statement of Claim with the Financial Industry Regulatory Authority (FINRA) against LPL Financial for failing to supervise the actions of San Antonio stockbroker Sanders Spangler. FINRA Case#-17-01513.

The FINRA suit, which seeks damages of between $100,000 and $500,000,  alleges that Spangler made unsuitable investments and traded the victim’s IRA account without her knowledge or authority.

A few months ago, in 2/2017 Spangler was discharged by LPL Financial who made the following allegation on his FINRA record: “Exercising discretionary power in customer account(s) in violation of firm policy. “

Sanders Spangler was with LPL Financial from10/2005-3/2017.

If you have losses in an account in an account handled by Sanders Spangler , you may be able to recover damages through FINRA arbitration.

EXERCISING DISCRETION

In the securities industry exercising discretion means that the customer has authorized the broker to buy and sell securities without first consulting with the customer on each transaction. To avoid regulatory issues and to comply with firm policy, this permission must be granted in writing. Most accounts are not discretionary accounts, meaning that the broker is required to consult with the customer before making a purchase or sale in the account.

FINRA ARBITRATION

Arbitration is an alternative to litigation or mediation in order to resolve a dispute over damages when a customer has suffered losses due to the negligence or fraud of a stockbroker. The process is much more expedient and far less costly than court litigation.

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

Elder Financial Exploitation Seminar-Williston, VT-May 18, 2017

May 16, 2017-Williston, VT

The New England Federal Credit Union is holding a seminar on Elder Financial Exploitation on Thursday, May 18th, at their main branch located at 141 Harvest Lane in Williston, from 5:30-7:00pm.

The seminar is free and open to the public.

If you are concerned about losses in your brokerage account or the investment accounts of your parents or loved ones, call for a no charge consultation to discuss your options. We have been helping investors recover damages for investment losses for over 25 years.

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

Steven H. Murphy – Former VSR Financial Services Broker- Discloses Customer Disputes- Simi Valley, CA

April 2017- Simi Valley, CA

The FINRA records  of Steven H. Murphy,  a  stockbroker who is currently employed by  Summit Brokerage Services  and was previously employed by VSR Financial Services, disclose a pending  customer dispute and a prior 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 currently pending FINRA arbitration 16-01531 a customer of VSR Financial Services alleges damages in an unstated amount for  unsuitable investments, breach of fiduciary duty, violation of California state  elder abuse from 8/2008 to 11/2014 in connection with the purchase of Direct Investments – limited partnerships, private placements , Equipment Leasing investments  and Real Estate Securities.

Murphy was employed by VSR Financial Services from 6/2005- 9/2016. He is currently employed by Summit Brokerage 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 . In their findings, FINRA criticized 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 questions about an account  handled by Steven Murphy or if you have losses in an account at VSR Financial Services, 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

Demitrios Hallas-Former PHX Financial Broker-Named in SEC Complaint-

April 2017- New York

The FINRA records of  Demitrios Hallas ,  a  former PHX Financial stockbroker who is currently not registered disclose two final regulatory events, 2 prior customer disputes and a termination from employment.

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.

Hallas was recently named in an SEC Complaint alleging that he purchased and sold daily leveraged Exchange Traded Funds and Notes (ETFs and ETNs) knowingly or recklessly disregarding that the products were unsuitable for his customers. In addition the SEC alleges that Hallas misappropriated over $170,000 from one customer. Link to SEC complaint. 

Hallas was suspended by FINRA in April 2016 for failing to respond to a request for information.

In February 2012 Halllas was discharged by Chase Investment Services Corp. who made the following allegation in connection with the termination: “Job performance, including customer complaints alleging unauthorized trades and failure to disclose fees”

Hallas’ prior employment includes PHX Financial, Forefront Capital Markets, Santander Securities, Aegis Capital Corp., Chase Investment Services and PNC Investments.

If you have losses in an account in an account handled by Demitrios Hallas  , 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

RIchard G. Cody-Former Concorde Investment Services Broker-Charged With Fraud by SEC-Spring Lake, NJ

UPDATED JUNE 2017- Spring Lake, New Jersey

According to publicly available records Richard G. Cody , (CRD# 2794558) ,  a  currently unregistered stockbroker who last worked for IFS Securities  , has numerous disclosures: 

  • 2 pending and 1 prior regulatory events
  • 1 civil lawsuit
  • 13 currently pending customer disputes
  • 3 prior customer disputes
  • 2 currently pending regulatory investigations
  • 1 termination from employment
  • 1 outstanding judgment/lien

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 December 2016 the SEC instituted litigation charging Cody with defrauding his retired clients by concealing the fact that their retirement accounts had suffered extensive losses and that the monthly payments they were receiving were exhausting their retirement savings. The SEC alleges that Cody concealed their substantial losses by making materially misleading statements, leading the clients to believe that their investments were maintaining steady value and that their monthly withdrawals were being financed by investment gains.

Currently pending customer disputes include:

  • 4/2017-A customer of Westminster Financial Securities seeks damages of $164,358 and alleges that Cody misrepresented account balances.
  • 3/2017-A customer of Concorde Investment Services seeks damages of $150,000 and alleges that Cody misappropriated funds and forged documents.
  • 3/2017-A customer of Concorde Investment Services seeks damages of $25,000 and alleges that Cody misappropriated funds and forged documents.

Richard G. Cody‘s employment in the securities industry includes IFS Securities, Concorde Investment Services and Westminster Financial Securities.

In September 2016 Cody was discharged by IFS Securities who alleged that Cody was “selling away” from the firm and had forged documents.

For information on Richard Cody’s ex-wife Jill Cody (Tramontano) who has been barred from the securities industry and who faces a number of customer suits, follow this link.

We are interested in speaking with former customers of Richard G. Cody and Jill Cody (Tramontano). 

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

Austin W. Morton-Former Edward Jones Broker-Named in Theft Complaint-Sallisaw, OK

March 2017-Sallisaw, OK

According to publicly available records Austin W. Morton , (CRD# 5538108) ,  a  currently unregistered stockbroker who previously worked for Edward Jones  disclose a pending regulatory matter, a pending customer dispute and a termination from employment.

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 2016052347901, the regulator named Morton alleging that he converted $36,000 from an 82 year old former customer with dementia. The complaint alleges that Morton first took $20,000 in cash from the customer after taking he took the customer to the bank to withdraw the money. He then had the customer loan him $6,000 for non existent medical expenses, but actually had the customer give him a signed blank check which Morton made out for $22,000 according to FINRA. He also had the customer give him $2,000 for a purported outside business investment.

Edward Jones discharged Morton in November 2016.

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 Sibley-Former Raymond James Broker-Discloses Multiple Customer Disputes Alleging Abuse of the Elderly-Boca Raton, FL

April 2017-Boca Raton, FL

According to publicly available records Scott Allen Sibley  , (CRD# 1523981) ,  a   former stockbroker who last worked for Moors & Cabot,  discloses 3 prior regulatory events, 2 pending customer disputes, 15 prior final customer disputes,  a termination from employment and an outstanding judgment/lien.

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 2015  Sibley was fined $15,000 and suspended for 15 days to resolve allegations by the Florida Office of Financial Regulation that  he made unauthorized trades in a client account.

In April 2017 FINRA permanently barred Sibley from the securities industry and found that he made about 900 securities purchases and sales in customer accounts without authorization, knowledge or consent. In addition Sibley caused the customer to carry a margin debit balance without the customer’s authorization, knowledge or consent and over concentrated the account in precious metals.

The prior final customer disputes include:

  • FINRA arbitration 15-0881 in which a Raymond James customer alleged exploitation of a vulnerable adult, exploitation of a disabled adult and other claims. That case was settled for $325,000.

In pending FINRA arbitration 17-0066, a Raymond James customer alleges damages of $300,000 for negligence, fraud and violations of the Florida Investor’s Protection Act.

In pending FINRA arbitration 16-01493, a Raymond James customer alleges damages of $675,000 for negligence, fraud, unsuitable recommendations, exploitation of the elderly and other claims.

Sibley was discharged by Raymond James in 2/2015 after the firm received multiple customer complaints alleging unauthorized trading.

Sibley was employed by Moors & Cabot from 3/2015-2/2017 and by Raymond James 11/2007-3/2015.

If you have losses in an  investment account handled by Scott Sibley  , you may be entitled to recover damages. 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