Category Archives: Market Manipulation

Michael Bressman-Former FCG Advisors Broker- Pleads Guilty to Investment Advisor Fraud-Chatham, NJ

September 2019- Chatham, NJ

According to publicly available records  Michael Bressman ,  a  currently unregistered stockbroker, who was last registered with FCG Advisors discloses a pending investigation, a pending civil event, a pending criminal event,  two prior regulatory events, a pending customer dispute, 4 prior customer disputes  and  terminations 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 9/2018 Bressman was charged with investment advisor fraud, a felony, in Federal Court in Massachusetts.  Case# 18cr 10315. In June 2019, Bressman pleaded guilty to defrauding clients by engaging in a cherry-picking scheme, according to a news release from the Department of Justice. Pursuant to the plea deal, the government recommended a sentence of 24-40 months.

In 9/2018 the United States Securities and Exchange Commission filed case # 1:18cv11925 in Federal Court with the United States District Court for the District of Massachusetts alleging the following against Michael A. Bressman “This case involves a fraudulent “cherry picking” scheme carried out by Bressman in his role as a securities broker.   From at least January 2012 through February 2018, Bressman  secretly misused his access to his customers’ brokerage accounts to enrich himself and two of his family members at the expense of his customers- most of whom were “Main Street” investors with relatively modest investment portfolios.   As a result of his deceptive scheme, Bressman received at least $700,000 in ill-gotten gains.  Cherry-picking occurs when a broker, who buys and sells securities on behalf of his brokerage customers, defrauds those customers by purchasing stock and then waiting to see whether the price of the stock goes up, or down, before allocating the trade.    If the stock goes up, the broker keeps the trade for himself or a set of “favored” accounts.   If the stock goes down, the broker puts the trades into other disfavored customer accounts.   In other words, the broker “cherry-picks” the profitable trades for himself or certain favored accounts, while giving unprofitable trades to his other customers. “ That case is still pending.

In February of 2018 the United States Securities and Exchange Commission initiated an investigation that is still pending.   “Mr. Bressman was accused of, among other things, misusing the firm’s allocation account in connection with his personal trades.”

Michael Bressman worked for FCG Advisors from 2/ 2000 until May 2018 when Bressman was discharged from FCG Advisors after allegations were made that accused him of, among other things, misusing the Firm’s allocation account in connection with his personal trades.

Bressman was discharged by Merrill Lynch in 1/2000 after it was alleged by a customer that he had traded her account without her authorization.

If you have questions about an investment account handled by Michael Bressman, contact us for a no charge consultation to learn about 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

Spartan Securities Group Named in SEC Regulatory Action Over Penny Stocks-Clearwater, FL

February 2019-Tampa, FL

The U.S. Securities & Exchange Commission (SEC) issued a litigation release on 2/21/2019 charging Spartan Securities Group, Ltd. , Island Capital Management, LLC, Carl E. Dilley, Micah J. Eldred and David D. Lopez for their roles in the creation “blank check” companies from 2009-2014.

The complaint alleges that Spartan Securities Group filed fraudulent applications with the Financial Industry Regulatory Authority to publicly list the companies so that the shares could be traded to public investors.

According to the release Dilley and Eldred, who are both principals of Spartan Securities, signed the false applications even though they knew or were at least reckless that the companies were fake.

The SEC is seeking to bar Spartan Securities Group from participating in penny stock offerings in the future.

Spartan Securities Group, Ltd.  is headquartered in Clearwater, Florida. They are registered in 38 U.S. States and territories and have been a member of FINRA since 2001. According to FINRA records they have been the subject of 10 prior regulatory actions.

If you have questions about an account at Spartan Securities Group, call for a no charge consultation 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

SEC Warns Investors– Beware of Fake News

April 2017- Washington, DC

The U. S. Securities and Exchange Commission issued an Investor Alert warning that articles on an investment research website appearing to be an unbiased source of information may be part of an undisclosed paid stock promotion designed to promote the sale of the stock.  Link to SEC Investor Alert. 

“Stock promotion schemes may be conducted through investment research websites,” said Lori Schock, Director of the SEC’s Office of Investor Education and Advocacy.  “Investors looking for objective investment information should be aware that fraudsters may use these websites to profit at investors’ expense.”

The SEC recently commenced enforcement actions against companies and individuals for generating deceptive articles on investment research websites. They have charged 27 parties (individuals, public companies, firms and writers) with fraud. See this for more details. 

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

Lek Securities Named in Market Manipulation Regulatory Action

UPDATE JUNE 2017-FINRA records disclose that Lek Securities has 20 currently pending regulatory events and 7 prior regulatory events.

March 27, 2017

Lek Securities and its CEO Samuel F. Lek have been targeted in disciplinary proceedings filed by the Financial Industry Regulatory Authority (FINRA) , the New York Stock Exchange (NYSE) and a number of other exchanges. The complaints allege that Lek and his company were involved in manipulative trading in a customer account known as ‘Avalon” impacting both equities and options markets.

According to the FINRA press release, which can be accessed here, Avalon’s manipulative trading involved practices known as ‘layering‘ and ‘spoofing‘ which entails one or more traders moving the price of a security by placing bogus orders and then modifying or cancelling them so that they never become actual trades. Once there is an appearance of interest in the stock, the trader can buy or sell it on the other side at a better price.

The firm is also charged with violating the know your customer rules, failure to properly preserve electronic communications, maintenance of CRD information, supervision of outside business activities and other violations.

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

Alejandro Falla-Former Ultralat Capital Markets Broker-Sanctioned by Securities Regulator-Coral Gables, FL

February 2017-Coral Gables, FL

According to publicly available records Alejandro Falla , (CRD# 5064828) ,  a  former stockbroker who was last employed by  BAC Florida Investments,  disclose  a recent regulatory sanction.

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.

Without admitting or denying the findings, Falla consented to the entry of findings the that he failed to disclose the use of non-market foreign exchange rates in connection with a series of bond swap transactions in retail customer accounts in violation of securities laws. Falla was permanently barred by FINRA.

Alejandro Falla was registered with BAC Florida Investments from 3/2013-10/2014. Prior to that he was employed by Ultralat Capital Markets in Miami, FL.

 

If you have questions about an account in an account handled by Alejandro Falla, 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