Category Archives: Unregistered Securities

Mark Hopkins- Former American Portfolios Financial Broker-Barred from Securities Industry- Discloses Regulatory Events & Customer Disputes -Grand Blanc, MI

November 2020- Grand Blanc, MI

According to publicly available records, former American Portfolios Financial Services, Inc. (APFS) ,  financial advisor Mark Lewton Hopkins,  has been barred from the securities industry by FINRA. He discloses 2 regulatory events, a pending civil case,  2 customer disputes and a termination.

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 January of 2020,  the State of Michigan filed case #240324 alleging that in connection with the offer or sale of securities, Hopkins omitted a material fact necessary to make other statements made not misleading.      Sanctions were a fine of $2,500.

In May of 2019  in FINRA case 2018060968101 Hopkins was  permanently barred from the securities industry to resolve allegations that he refused to provide documents and information requested by FINRA in connection with its investigation relating to the issues disclosed in his regulatory reporting.  As a result,  Hopkins was permanently barred from FINRA in all capacities.

In July of 2020, the United States Securities and Exchange Commission in Federal Court in the U.S. District Court of the Eastern District of Michigan filed case #20cv11980 against Hopkins alleging that he misappropriated at least $1.15 million from at least five customers of the brokerage firm with which he was associated.    Hopkins represented that he would invest their funds in an investment program at a local credit union, when in actuality no such program existed.    Rather than investing the customer funds, Hopkins deposited them into an account he controlled at the credit union and misappropriated them.

In July of 2019 an American Portfolios Financial Services, Inc. customer alleged that Hopkins solicited $500,000 purportedly for an investment away from APFS  and utilized the funds for his own purposes.    That  case was resolved for $175,000.

In March of 2019, an APFS customer alleged that Hopkins solicited funds for an investment away from the brokerage dealer at a credit union.  Hopkins presented an altered bank check as evidence of his ability to repay.   The alleged damages are $400,000 and the case is still pending.

In December of 2018, APFS permitted Hopkins to resign after allegations that he accepted customer funds for an investment that was not on the books of the firm and without obtaining pre-approval.

Hopkins  was employed by American Portfolios Financial Services, Inc. from June of 2009 until December of 2018.   Before that time he was employed with LPL Financial Corporation.

If you have losses in an account handled by Mark Hopkins, 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

Jason Dukas-Former Stifel Nicolaus & Co Broker-Discloses Regulatory Event and a Termination- Clearwater, FL

November 2020- Clearwater, FL

According to publicly available records Jason Dukas (CRD#4188239), a  stockbroker with  Stifel, Nicolaus & Company, discloses a regulatory event 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 May 2020, in case #2017055028101, FINRA alleged that Dukas participated in a private securities transaction involving a customer of his member firm without providing prior written notice to his firm.   The findings stated that Dukas participated in an investment by the customer in a start-up  company away from the firm.   He solicited the transaction by recommending the investment to a customer, arranging for the customer to attend a promotional meeting about the company and provided advertising materials about the company to the customer.     He helped facilitate the transaction by forwarding a promissory note and other investment related documents to the customer.    Sanctions were a nine month suspension starting June 2020 until February 2021 and a $15,000 fine.

In June 2017 Dukas was allowed to voluntarily resign from his employment with Wells Fargo Clearing Services after allegations that his conduct related to a private security conflicted with the firm’s policy related to private securities transactions.

Dukas has worked with Stifel Nicolaus & Co., Inc. since August 2017.   Before that time he was employed with Wells Fargo Clearing Services, Wells Fargo Advisors and Morgan Stanley Smith Barney. 

If you had an account with Jason Dukas that suffered losses, you may be entitled to collect damages from his prior employer. Call to discuss your 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

Jeffrey Nimmow- Former Forest Securities Financial Advisor- Barred from FINRA – Merrimac, WI

October 2020- Hillside, IL

The FINRA records of Jeffrey Scott Nimmow  , a broker previously employed  by  Forest Securities, Inc. disclose  a regulatory event resulting in his bar from the securities industry, two pending customer disputes and a termination.

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 February 2020, Nimmow was permanently barred from the securities industry by the Securities and Exchange Commission after allegations that he engaged in the sale of promissory notes to investors totaling at least $3,3M without disclosing and receiving approval from his member firm.    The findings stated that the promissory notes were for a self-advertised real-estate investment fund and were unregistered securities.    Nimmow received approximately $177,937 in commissions for these transactions.  Later the fund filed a voluntary Chapter 11 Bankruptcy petition.   The SEC filed a complaint with the US District Court for the Southern district of Florida against the fund and its former owner, among others, claiming that they ran a Ponzi scheme.

In June of 2018, a Forest Securities, Inc. customer filed FINRA case #18-02242 alleging that Nimmow solicited customer to loan money to Woodbridge group of companies.

In March of 2018, Nimmow was discharged from Forest Securities, Inc., after allegations related to the sale of Woodbridge promissory notes and mortgages .

Nimmow worked for Forest Securities, Inc. from August 2015 until March of 2018.  He was with Legacy Financial from October 2006 until August 2015.   Prior to that he was with Questar Capital Corporation.

If you have problems in an account  handled by Jeffrey Scott Nimmow  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.

International Representation

Rex Securities Law

TollFree: 877-224-3199

Florida-561 391 1900 

Texas-512-329-2870

Michael Giokas-Former Fortune Financial Services-Broker-Pleads Guilty to Fraud-Williamsville, NY

September 2019- Williamsville, NY

According to publicly available records  Michael Giokas (CRD# 1398674) ,  a  former stockbroker who was last  employed by Fortune Financial Services, Inc.,  disclose  2 prior regulatory events, a felony fraud criminal charge , 3 pending and 7 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.  

According to a Department of Justice news release, in April 2018 Michael Giokas, 58, of Clarence, NY, pleaded guilty to wire fraud for defrauding numerous clients of hundreds of thousands of dollars. He faces up to 20 years in prison on the charges.

According to the release, between 5/2017-10/2017, he persuaded clients to withdraw money from their  accounts at Nationwide Mutual and invest in a company called Trinity Council, with a promise to earn 8-9% annually. Trinity Council was a shell company with no real business, set up to accomplish the fraud.

Settlements totaling several hundred thousands have been paid out to customers already. Pending customer claims exceed $1 million.

Giokas was employed with Fortune Financial Services, Inc. from 2/2013 until 10/2017.    Prior to that he was employed by Comprehensive Asset Management and Servicing, Inc., from March 2002 until February 2013.    Giokas discloses  business affiliations with Giokas Wealth Advisors and Giokas Financial Services in Williamsville, NY.

If you have losses in an account handled by Michael Giokas, contact us for a no charge consultation to learn how you may be entitled 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

Michael Patman Subject of TX Securities Regulators Investigation Over Woodland Resources-Fort Worth, TX

September 2019 -Fort Worth, Texas

The Texas State Securities Board (TSSB) announced that unregistered investment promoter Jeremy “JB” Yowell is cooperating with the Enforcement Division of the State Securities Board in its investigation of Woodland Resources LLC and its director Michael E. Patman.

According to the TSSB release, earlier this year Yowell promoted an investment offering by Woodland Resources, soliciting Texas residents to purchase working interests in oil wells in Seminole County, Oklahoma.

A TSSB emergency order alleges that Patman is violating the Texas Securities Act by failing to disclose that he previously headed two companies that went into bankruptcy and that he owed over $13 million to investors who successfully sued him for fraud.

Yowell was previously sanctioned by Michigan regulators for acting as an unregistered agent selling investments for a commission of up to 20% of the value of the securities sold.

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