Articles Tagged with securities arbitration

Last month, this blog reported that broker Scott Wayne Reed (CRD No. 3007033) had been barred from the securities industry by the Financial Industry Regulatory Authority (“FINRA”) for participating in private securities transactions totaling at least $3.5 million without providing prior written notice to his firm. Beginning in early 2019 and continuing until his termination from Wells Fargo in April 2020, Mr. Reed solicited at least six individuals, including at least two Wells Fargo customers, to invest in securities issued by Pebblekick, a software and web development company based in Pasadena, California.

Iorio Altamirano LLP has since learned that Mr. Reed has also solicited clients to invest in the following high risk and speculative investments:

  • GWG “L Bonds”: Speculative, high risk, and illiquid “bonds” that are classified as an alternative investment.  An L bond is an unrated life insurance bond that finances the purchase and premium payments of life insurance contracts bought in the secondary market.  Brokers get a commission of 1 to 5% of the market price of the bond.

Numerous stockbrokers at David Lerner Associates Inc. (“David Lerner Associates”) recommended risky and speculative Puerto Rico municipal bonds to customers.

An investor may be able to recover financial losses if the recommendation was not suitable for the customer or if David Lerner misrepresented or omitted material facts about the bonds in connection with making the recommendation.

Iorio Altamirano LLP, a securities arbitration law firm based in New York, has recently filed an arbitration claim against David Lerner Associates, alleging that President and CEO Martin Walcoe and David Lerner unsuitably recommended that the customer purchase and hold Puerto Rico municipal bonds.  The claim also alleges that Mr. Walcoe made material misrepresentations and omitted material facts concerning the risk and safety of the bonds.  The recommendations occurred at a time when credit rating agencies were downgrading Puerto Rico municipal bonds and indicated that further credit downgrades were imminent.   At the time of the recommendations, Mr. Walcoe was an investment counselor and branch manager.

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;

Daniel Todd Lerner is a stockbroker with David Lerner Associates, Inc. (“David Lerner ”) in White Plains, New York, with a history of customer complaints.

Mr. Daniel T. Lerner has been the subject of seven customer complaints, which include three pending disputes. The pending disputes are securities arbitration claims filed by customers of Mr. Daniel T. Lerner, alleging that he unsuitably recommended purchasing Energy 11, LP, a limited partnership investment that invests in offshore oil and gas properties.  Two of the complaints also include allegations that Mr. Daniel T. Lerner unsuitably recommended the purchase of the Great Art Fund.   All three complaints allege that Mr. Lerner misrepresented and omitted material facts related to these investments.

Separately, in January 2021, a customer alleged $100,000 in damages resulting from unsuitable investment recommendations concerning a mutual fund, as well as interests in Direct Participation Programs (DPP) and Limited Partnerships (LPs).  A DPP is a financial security that enables investors to participate in a business venture’s cash flow and tax benefits.  The customer did not file a securities arbitration complaint.  Instead, the customer complained directly to David Lerner, and the firm denied the complaint. Customers such as this investor may still file a securities arbitration complaint.  They should contact an experienced securities arbitration attorney to further consultation.

Morgan Stanley’s Global Sports and Entertainment Group is a division of Morgan Stanley Wealth Management that targets professional athletes and entertainers.  The group consists of approximately 168 financial advisors across the country that hold the designation “Global Sports and Entertainment Directors.”   Morgan Stanley promotes that these advisors are uniquely qualified to address the needs of actors, directors, writers, producers, musicians, songwriters, professional athletes, coaches, and sport team owners.  Over the past year, these brokers have received six customer complaints, according to public records.

If you or a client were a customer of Morgan Stanley’s Global Sports and Entertainment Group and either sustained financial losses or suspect that Morgan Stanley did not have your best interest in mind when recommending investments or transactions, contact New York securities arbitration lawyers Iorio Altamirano LLP for a free and confidential evaluation of your account.

Financial Advisor Darryl Cohen (CRD No. 2786613) – Westlake Village, CA

Professional basketball players Chandler Parsons and Courtney Lee, who have both played in the National Basketball Association, have reportedly filed a $5 million securities arbitration complaint against Morgan Stanley.  According to broker Darryl Cohen’s CRD report, the complaint alleges that Morgan Stanley made payments from the players’ accounts without prior approval.  The complaint also alleges that Mr. Cohen recommended the use of a “liquidity access line” for real estate and life insurance policies for which they “now claim they hold no interest.”

Parsons and Lee were not the first professional athlete to file a claim against Morgan Stanley arising out of broker Darryl Cohen’s conduct.   Former Major League Baseball outfielder Nyjer Morgan filed a securities arbitration complaint against Morgan Stanley in May 2020.  The complaint alleged that Mr. Cohen unsuitably recommended using a liquidity access line” to loan funds to outside business entities.

If you have lost money with broker Darryl Cohen or Morgan Stanley, contact New York securities arbitration lawyers Iorio Altamirano LLP for a free and confidential evaluation of your account.

On behalf of a client, securities arbitration law firm Iorio Altamirano LLP has filed an arbitration claim through FINRA Dispute Resolution Services against David Lerner Associates Inc. (“David Lerner”).  The claim alleges that President and CEO Martin Walcoe and David Lerner unsuitably recommended that the customer purchase and hold Puerto Rico municipal bonds and misrepresented and omitted material facts concerning the risk and safety of the bonds.  The recommendations and misrepresentations occurred at a time when credit rating agencies were downgrading Puerto Rico municipal bonds and indicated that further credit downgrades were imminent.   At the time of the recommendations, Mr. Walcoe was an investment counselor and branch manager.

The claim also alleged that David Lerner also failed to suitably and properly allocate the customer’s brokerage account. Instead, David Lerner concentrated the customer’s account in risky, speculative, and uninsured Puerto Rico municipal bonds.

David Lerner’s recommendations to purchase and hold speculative Puerto Rico municipal bonds and its repeated recommendations to concentrate the customer’s investment accounts into speculative junk bonds were unsuitable and not in the customer’s best interest in light of the customer’s investment objectives and “middle ground” risk tolerance.

Here is how you can file a claim to recover losses suffered from trading restrictions placed on GameStop, AMC, Blackberry, Nokia, and other stocks.

On February 12, 2021, in a letter addressed to Senator Elizabeth Warren, Robinhood Financial, LLC confirmed twenty-four (24) pending securities arbitrations.

Robinhood’s letter was written in response to an inquiry sent by Senator Warren on February 2, 2021, as to why Robinhood “abruptly changed the rules” for retail investors by restricting the purchase of certain securities.

The Financial Industry Regulatory Authority (“FINRA”) has barred stockbroker Paul John Halvorson from the securities industry.  FINRA expelled Mr. Halvorson from the brokerage industry because he refused to provide information and documents connected with FINRA’s investigation into the circumstances given rise to his termination from Morgan Stanley in November 2020.

Mr. Halvorson was a financial advisor at Morgan Stanley in Charleston, South Carolina, from June 2009 until his employment was terminated in November 2020. In connection with the discharge, Morgan Stanley alleged that Mr. Halvorson submitted transactions under production numbers that were inconsistent with an agreement that he had with another broker, resulting in a shortfall of revenue credited to the other broker.

If you have suffered financial losses investing with Paul Halvorson or suspect that Mr. Halvorson did not have your best interest in mind when recommending investments or account transactions, contact New York securities arbitration law firm Iorio Altamirano LLP for a free and confidential review of your account.

Mirsad Muharemovic is a stockbroker with Arive Capital Markets LLC (“Arive Capital Markets”) in Brooklyn, NY, with a history of customer complaints and associations with disreputable broker-dealers.

Mr. Muharemovic has 22 years of experience in the securities industry.  He has been associated with nine different broker-dealers, including a past association with a firm expelled by FINRA.

Mr. Muharemovic has been the subject of three customer complaints, including one dispute that is still pending and another one resulting in an arbitration award for the complaining customer.

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