Articles Tagged with elder abuse

The Financial Industry Regulatory Authority (“FINRA”) has suspended financial advisor Hebert Frey from the securities industry for sixteen months.  Mr. Frey consented to the suspension after FINRA alleged that he excessively traded a customer’s account and placed unauthorized trades. The customer was a 54-year-old disabled homemaker.  FINRA also fined Mr. Frey $15,000 and ordered him to disgorge $76,137 in commissions.

The alleged conduct occurred while Mr. Frey was employed by Lincoln Douglas Investments, LLC in Mt. Vernon, Ohio, and Union Capital Company in Tucson, Arizona.

As discussed more fully below, Mr. Frey has a long history of customer complaints, run-ins with regulators, and employment terminations.  Throughout his career, Mr. Frey has been suspended six times by regulators, ordered to pay nearly $50,000 in fines, and been the subject of at least six customer complaints.

The Financial Industry Regulatory Authority (“FINRA”) has suspended financial advisor Joseph Ambrosole from the securities industry for six months.  Mr. Ambrosole consented to the suspension after FINRA alleged that he excessively and unsuitably traded the accounts of two customers.  FINRA also fined Mr. Ambrosole, who was also suspended by FINRA in 2017 for unethical sales practices, $5,000 and ordered him to pay $147,031.50 in restitution.

Mr. Ambrosole, who has only eight years of experience in the securities industry, has a history of associations disreputable broker-dealers, customer complaints, and regulatory sanctions.

The alleged conduct occurred while Mr. Ambrosole was employed by Joseph Stone Capital L.L.C. in New York, New York.

The Financial Industry Regulatory Authority (“FINRA”) has barred broker Gregory Mancuso from the securities industry for providing false testimony during an on-the-record interview connected with an investigation into Mr. Mancuso’s handling of the brokerage accounts of two senior sisters with disabilities. The alleged conduct occurred while Mr. Mancuso was registered with BMA Securities, LLC, from August 2, 2016, to November 13, 2017.

On December 21, 2020, FINRA’s Department of Enforcement filed a complaint against Mr. Mancuso, alleging that Mr. Mancuso had his two elderly customers transfer a large part of their life savings to a company with which he was affiliated.   One of the sisters was 73 years old and had dementia.  The other sister was 68 years old and had multiple sclerosis.   The complaint alleges that in 2017, Mancuso recommended that the elder sister use funds from her 401(k) account to purchase a variable annuity offered by a purported Swiss asset management firm, which Mr. Mancuso was affiliated.   The complaint also alleges that Mr. Mancuso testified falsely during an on-the-record interview to conceal both his involvement in the transfer and actions he took to potentially change one of the sister’s power of attorney.

Mr. Mancuso failed to respond to the FINRA complaint.   FINRA’s Department of Enforcement then requested a default decision, which the hearing officer granted.

This post is part of a series of investigative blog posts that spotlight modern-day boiler rooms that operate under the guise of a reputable brokerage firm.  Many of the broker-dealers featured in this series still use boiler room tactics such as cold-calling customers and high-pressure or aggressive sales tactics.  Other brokerage firms have a propensity for broker misconduct, such as excessive trading, churning, unauthorized trades, and misrepresentation.  Iorio Altamirano LLP is a securities arbitration law firm based in New York City. We represent investors nationwide who have suffered investment losses due to wrongful conduct by financial advisors and brokerage firms.  We are investor advocates.

Other Investigative Blog Posts:

The Financial Industry Regulatory Authority’s Department of Enforcement has filed a disciplinary proceeding complaint against broker Clyde Anthony Jensen.  The complaint alleges that Mr. Jensen acted inappropriately by becoming the beneficiary of $600,000 worth of securities in an elderly client’s account. Specifically, the complaint alleges that, while associated with Ameriprise Financial Services, Inc. in Fort Meyers, FL, Mr. Jensen engaged in the following conduct in violation of FINRA rules:

  • Jensen was the broker of record for several accounts held by a customer who was a widow and in her 90s.
  • In March 2017, Mr. Jensen told his firm that his elderly customer wanted to name Mr. Jensen the beneficiary of nine securities in one of her firm accounts, which, at the time, were worth approximately $600,000.

The Financial Industry Regulatory Authority’s Department of Enforcement has filed a disciplinary proceeding complaint against broker Megurditch Patatian (aka Mike Patatian) alleging that, while associated with Western International Securities, Inc., Mr. Patatian engaged in conduct in violation of FINRA rules, including:

  • making 81 unsuitable recommendations to purchase over $7.8 million in non-traded Real Estate Investment Trusts (REITs) to 59 customers, including 21 senior investors;
  • recommending illiquid non-traded REIT to six customers that also needed liquidity;

The Financial Industry Regulatory Authority (“FINRA”) has suspended financial advisor Scott Richard Hansen for three months from the securities industry over allegations that Mr. Hansen, who is not a lawyer and did not attend law school, prepared a will and trust agreement for an elderly client who was in hospice care. FINRA also fined Mr. Hansen $7,500.

At the time of the alleged conduct, Mr. Hansen was a financial advisor with LPL Financial in Moab, Utah. LPL Financial terminated his employment in March 2020 for his conduct.

If you have lost money with broker Scott Hansen or LPL Financial, contact New York securities arbitration lawyers Iorio Altamirano LLP for a free and confidential review of your account.

FINRA has suspended financial advisor Anthony (Tony) Tricarico from the securities industry for six months and fined him $5,000.

FINRA alleged that between November 2014 and November 2015, while employed by Aegis Capital Corp. in New York, NY, Mr. Tricarico violated FINRA Rules 2111 and 2010 when he engaged in excessive and quantitatively unsuitable trading in the accounts of three customers.

Mr. Tricarico was employed by Aegis Capital Corp. in New York, NY, from March 2010 until July 2020.

On January 20, 2021, a Financial Industry Regulatory Authority Hearing Officer barred Bryan G. Mazliach from the securities industry for:

  • Recommending and effecting an unsuitable investment strategy to five customers involving in-and-out, short-term, and excessive trading.
  • Executing unauthorized trades in the accounts of eight customers.

FINRA has barred stockbroker Dustin Paul Shafer from the securities industry.  FINRA handed down the expulsion because Mr. Shafer refused to appear for on-the-record testimony with FINRA in connection with FINRA’s investigation into whether Mr. Shafer borrowed money from a customer.  Mr. Shafer was a financial advisor at Newbridge Securities Corporation from September 2019 until the firm fired him in November 2020, alleging that he borrowed money from an existing client.

On December 22, 2020, the State of Illinois Securities Department issued a temporary order prohibiting Mr. Shafer from offering or selling securities in or from the State of Illinois, alleging that he borrowed over $55,000 from one of his elderly clients.

Mr. Shafer has also been the subject of six customer complaints related to non-traded REITs while employed by the following firms:

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