Tag Archives: avoid financial exploitation of elderly

Scott Sibley-Former Raymond James Broker-Subject of Numerous Customer Complaints-Ft. Lauderdale, FL

February 2018-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, 4 pending customer disputes, 18 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 made findings  that Sibley made about 900 securities purchases and sales in customer accounts without the authorization , knowledge or consent of the customers. In addition Sibley caused the customer to carry a margin debit balance without the customer’s authorization, knowledge or consent and over  concentrated the customer’s 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.
  • FINRA arbitration 17-0066-a Raymond James customer alleged damages of $300,000 for negligence, fraud and violations of the Florida Investor’s Protection Act. That case was settled in 2017 for $137,000.
  • FINRA arbitration 16-01493-a Raymond James customer alleged damages of $675,000 for negligence, fraud, unsuitable recommendations, exploitation of the elderly, violations of Florida securities laws and other claims. That case was settled in 2017 for $350,000.

The four currently pending cases seek damages in excess of $700,000.

Sibley was discharged by Raymond James in 2/2015 after the firm received multiple customer complaints alleging that the customer’s accounts had been traded without their permission.

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  , call to learn how you may be able to recover damages 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

Stephen Kowalski-Hennion & Walsh Broker-Discloses Customer Suit Over Municipal Debt-Parsippany, NJ

February 2018- Parsippany, New Jersey

The FINRA records of  Stephen G. Kowalski ,  a  stockbroker who is  employed by  Hennion & Walsh  disclose a prior final customer dispute and 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 pending FINRA arbitration 17-03137 a customer of Hennion & Walsh alleges damages of $670,000 for an unsuitable recommendation to purchase  municipal bonds from 2012-2017.

In a prior customer dispute, FINRA Case 09-3450, a customer of Hennion and Walsh and Kowalski alleged that investments in his account , which included municipal debt, mutual funds and unit investment trusts, were not suitable. That matter was settled for $99,000.

Stephen G. Kowalski  has been employed by Hennion & Walsh since 1990.

If you have losses in an account in an account handled by Stephen G. Kowalski  , contact us to discuss how you may be able to recover damages for those losses.

Puerto Rico Debt Crisis

In early 2014, various credit rating agencies downgraded the debt of Puerto Rico to non investment grade, better known as junk status or speculative grade. This downgrade triggered acceleration clauses requiring the repayment of some debt within months, rather than years.

Puerto Rico has over $70 billion of outstanding debt, with a debt to GDP ratio of about 68%. While about $30 billion (42%) of Puerto Rico’s debt is owned by residents of Puerto Rico, the larger portion is owned by non-residents, primarily residents of the continental United States.

Investors who have suffered losses on Puerto Rico’s bonds may be able to recover damages from the brokerage firm who sold the bonds.

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

Jay A. Wallinger-Former VSR Financial Services Broker-Discloses Customer Suit Over Equipment Leasing Investment-Stuart, Nebraska

February 2018-Stuart, NE

The FINRA records of  Jay Alan Wallinger ,  a  stockbroker who was formerly  employed by  VSR Financial Services  disclose the recent settlement of a customer dispute involving an alleged overconcentration of unsuitable 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 FINRA Case 16-03696, a customer of VSR Financial Services brought a claim over equipment leasing investments. The amount of damages sought was not stated but the customer alleged that the concentration level of this type of investment was too high and unsuitable, given the customer’s investment objectives and risk tolerance.

FINRA records indicate that the customer was paid $330,000 to resolve the case in January 2018.

Wallinger was employed by VSR FInancial Services from 9/1993-9/2016. He is currently employed by Summit Brokerage Services and discloses a business affiliation with Wallinger Financial Services LLC.

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, equipment leasing investments, commodities and derivatives contracts and, managed futures. These investments tend to be complex, illiquid, non-transparent, 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.

Non liquid investments are generally not suitable for retirees who are seeking steady and dependable income.

 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 Jay A. Wallinger 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

Cynthia Rodriguez Pleads Guilty to Bank Fraud/Embezzlement-McAllen, Texas

February 2018-McAllen, TX

Cynthia Luna Rodriguez, 45, of Pharr, Texas entered a guilty plea to allegations that she stole more than $1 million from customer accounts at First National Bank in Edinburg, TX, where she worked.

According to the press release from the United States Attorney’s Office for the Southern District of Texas, Rodriguez began stealing funds in 2006 and continued to do so after PlainsCapital Bank took over First National.

The accounts belonged primarily to elderly individuals and persons living out of the country whom were not likely to regularly monitor their accounts.

Sentencing is scheduled for April 11, 2018.

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

 

George Oldoerp Investigation-Former H. Beck Broker-Corona, CA

December 2017-San Antonio, Texas – Corona, California

We are investigating former H. Beck , Inc. stockbroker George J. Oldoerp in connection with a FINRA arbitration which we have filed on behalf of an elderly retired couple from San Antonio, Texas.

Our clients, who are seeking damages of $500,000,  allege that Oldoerp made unsuitable recommendations to them in various alternative investments including:

  • Cypress Income Fund VII
  • Cypress Income Fund 9
  • Cypress Income Fund III
  • Cypress Equipment Fund X
  • Atlas Energy
  • FS Investments
  • CNL Lifestyle Property Trust
  • Northstar Real Estate Income Trust
  • Cole Credit Property Trust II
  • Cole Credit Property Trust III

Our clients also allege that Oldoerp asked them to make a personal loan to him. Brokerage firms and industry rules generally prohibit borrowing from customers.

According to FINRA records, George J. Oldoerp  was employed by H. Beck, Inc. from 1/2002-12/2016 .

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.

 

If you have information you feel would be helpful to our investigation, please contact us. If you have questions about an account handled  by George J. Oldoerp, 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

Texas Financial Planners Sanctioned by Certified Financial Planning Board-Dec. 2017 Update

UPDATED December 2017

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 DECEMBER 2017, is a historical record of individuals from Texas 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 Revocation
Marcus C. Rodriguez (Houston)

Revocations
Nicole Y. Allen (Dallas)
Charles I. Alvarez (Houston)
Jeffrey W. Baum (Lubbock)
Farrish E. Betton (Houston)
Texas Craig R. Brockman (Plano)
Robert Carpenter (Wylie)
Mark W. Chuckran (Spring)
Jerrell J. Cosby (Fort Worth)
David Disraeli (Cedar Park)
Kathryn B. Farland (Plano)
Gordon Fiddes (Arlington)
A. Ken Flake, Sr. (Houston)
John J. Forsberg (Dallas)
Larry B. Groover (Dallas)
Douglas J. Hellie (San Antonio)
A. James Lynn (Dallas)
William H. Matthews (Dallas)
Jay C. Miles (Brenham/Chappell Hill)
Julia Carolyn Norton (San Antonio)
Solomon O. Onita (Houston)
Hymie Orlin (Houston)
Paul O. Ptak (Carrollton)
Lawrence L. Richter (San Antonio)
Terrence P. Riely (San Antonio)
Ralph R. Rush (El Paso)
Richard J. Suydam (Austin)
Brian P. Troy (Keller)
Travis D. Wakeley (Hurst)

Suspensions
Noor Amirali (Houston)
Matthew J. Anderson (Austin)
Brian W. Armstrong (Cleburne)
Gilbert J. Baker (Houston)
C. W. Biggs (Denton)
Richard D. Blair (Bee Cave)
Russell K. Childs (Spring)
Thomas M. Couch Jr. (Houston)
Craig A. Curry (Houston)
Kenneth W. Dresel (Midland)
Daniel P. Hensley (San Antonio)
Kyle Holland (Austin)
Carl E. Jones (Euless)
M.F. “Mickey” Long (Plano)
Texas Lance R. McCollum (Itasca)
Marianne Springer Miller (San Antonio)
Jeremy B. Stauss (Fort Worth)
John Howard Towers (Plano)
Roger D. Stevenson (San Benito)

Interim Suspension
Brian P. Troy (Keller)

Letters of Admonition
Douglas Wayne Blankenship (Addison)
Donald H. Christie (Waco)
Gerald S. Cohn (San Antonio)
Kerwyn N. Escayg (Webster)
Alan Goldfarb (Dallas)
Patricia Bisch Green (Houston)
Travis Hughes (El Paso)
Greer A. Kendall (Dallas)
MF “Mickey” Long, II (Plano)
Sidney J. Lorio (Bedford)
Sharon R. Luker (Plano)
Linnie Logan Phebus (Austin)
Keith D. Powell (Austin)
Lee A. Przybyla (San Antonio)
David L. Rhodes (Bryan)
Brian W. Sak (Magnolia)
Sean C. Thomas (Grapevine)
George M. Warner (Rockwall)

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

Timothy T. Gibbons-Former Morgan Stanley Broker-Ordered to Pay Former Customers $749K-New Orleans,LA

November 2017-New Orleans, LA

According to FINRA records,   without admitting or denying the findings, Timothy T. Gibbons a former Morgan Stanley broker,  entered into an agreement with FINRA to resolve allegations that he made unsuitable investment recommendations to five elderly customers ranging in age from 72 to 90.

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.

According to FINRA Letter of Acceptance Waiver and Consent No. 2015047910601, Gibbons over concentrated the accounts of these elderly clients in a single energy related investment. The concentration level in the customer’s accounts ranged from 65% to 79%.

The recommendation to invest in such a manner was unsuitable based on the customer’s age, risk tolerance, investment objectives and financial circumstances. FINRA Rule 2111(a) requires stockbrokers to have a reasonable basis to believe that a recommended transaction or investment strategy is suitable for the customer taking those and other factors such as tax status, investment experience time horizon and liquidity needs, into account.

Gibbons, who was employed by Morgan Stanley from 2009-2015,  was suspended from association with any FINRA member for 18 months, fined $20,000 and ordered to pay partial restitution to the customers of $716,750.

If you have questions about an account handled  by Timothy Gibbons or if you believe your broker over concentrated your portfolio in energy stocks or made other unsuitable recommendations, 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