Chicago Securities Fraud Attorneys Investment Arbitration Law Firm

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Recovering Investment Losses on a Contingency Fee Basis

Friday, March 27, 2015

GLR Advisors Charged In Ponzi Scheme

The Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) barred California-based GLR Advisors from the industry after the firm was charged with allegedly misleading investors claiming that the fund was SEC approved. GLR Advisors raised over $60 million by inflating the performance and strategy of a private investment fund. GLR claimed that between 2005 and 2011, the Growth Fund had returns of between 17%-25% during every year it was in operation. GLR also claimed the fund was tied to stock indices such as Dow Jones and Nasdaq. Instead, since 2009, the fund did not invest in any publicly-traded securities, and the funds were placed in illiquid investments, and were used to pay back other investors. If you invested money with GLR Advisors, please call us at 312-332-4200 to speak to an attorney about your options regarding recovering your investment losses.

Oppenheimer & Co. Sanctioned $3.75 Million by FINRA for Supervisory Failures of Mark Hotton

The Financial Industry Regulatory Authority (FINRA) fined Oppenheimer & Co. Inc. $2.5 million and ordered them to pay restitution of $1.25 million for failing to supervise a former broker, Mark Hotton. Allegedly, Mr. Hotton stole money from his customers and excessively traded in their brokerage accounts. He was permanently barred from the industry in August 2013. FINRA claimed Oppenheimer failed to adequately investigate Hotton before hiring him, even though he had seven customer complaints against him at the time, and had criminal charges against him. Oppenheimer did not place Mr. Hotton under heightened supervision, even after learning that he had defrauded business partners out of millions of dollars. Oppenheimer also failed to respond to allegations that there were wire transfer requests made where Hotton was wiring funds from customer accounts to entities he ran and controlled. More than $2.9 million was transferred from the accounts. Oppenheimer also failed to do anything about the fact that Hotton was excessively trading customer accounts. Oppenheimer also failed to make more than 300 required filings of its brokers in a timely manner. The investing public was not made aware of the serious allegations made against Oppenheimer's registered representatives, and the firm failed to provide timely responses to FINRA's requests for information and documents. Oppenheimer paid more than $6 million for claims related to its supervision of Hotton. Hotton was registered with Oppenheimer & Co. in Jericho, New York from November 2005 until February 2009. He has also been registered with M.S. Farrell & Co., Ladenburg, Thalmann & Co., Inc., American Capital Partners, Alexander Capital and Obsidian Financial Group, LLC. He has 24 customer disputes against him, six of which are currently pending. He is not registered with any member firm and FINRA permanently barred him from acting as a broker or otherwise associating with firms that sell securities to the public. Oppenheimer & Co. can be sued in the FINRA arbitration forum to recover any investment losses you may have suffered with Mark Hotton. Because the firm failed to reasonably supervise him, they can be held accountable for investment losses. Please call us at 312-332-4200 to speak to an attorney. We are lawyers who concentrate on securities investment losses. We are based in Chicago.

Suing to Recover Investment Losses with Raymond Daniel Schmidt

Former LPL Financial broker, Raymond Daniel Schmidt, was permanently barred from the securities industry by the Financial Industry Regulatory Authority (FINRA). Schmidt allegedly borrowed $2.3 million from seven clients between 2009 and 2012 to build a vacation rental property in Hawaii called "Pakalana Sanctuary" in Waimea on Hawaii's Big Island. He began the venture without telling his former firm, LPL Financial. Securities rules prohibit brokers from borrowing client money and from engaging in outside business activities if the firm is not notified. Mr. Schmidt allegedly told FINRA he would not cooperate with the investigation or provide documents pertaining to it.
Before working for LPL Financial in Oceanside, California from July 2006 until September 2014, Mr. Schmidt worked for Tower Square Securities, also in Oceanside, from April 2000 until July 2006. He has one customer dispute that is currently pending. He is no longer registered with any member firm and is not licensed to act as a broker or otherwise associate with firms that sell securities to the public. If you invested money with Raymond Daniel Schmidt, he and his former firm, LPL, can be sued in the FINRA arbitration forum to recover losses. LPL had a duty to reasonably supervise him while he was employed with them. Please call us to discuss your options at 312-332-4200.

Thursday, March 26, 2015

Suing Dale R. Isaak and Securities Service Network

Stoltmann Law Offices is investigating Dale R. Isaak and his former firm, Securities Service Networks, a Knoxville, Tennessee securities brokerage firm. Isaak allegedly sold numerous leveraged and inverse Exchange-Traded Funds (ETFs) between January 2010 and December 2011 to clients, some of them elderly, which resulted in losses of almost $1 million. An Exchange-Traded Fund is a marketable security that tracks an index or an index fund. Unlike mutual funds, an ETF trades like a common stock on a stock exchange. ETFs experience price changes throughout the day as they are bought and sold. Some ETFs may not be suitable for all investors, depending on their portfolio and investment strategy. Mr. Isaak allegedly used the Sherman Market Timing Strategy and recommended inverse and leveraged ETFs to his customers without disclosing that this was a "risky investment strategy."
Mr. Isaak was also associated with Royal Alliance Associates Inc. in New York, New York from April 1999 to January 2005 and Pruco Securities in Newark, New Jersey from November 1997 until March 1999. He has one customer dispute against him, and he is not currently licensed with any Financial Industry Regulatory Authority (FINRA) firm. Mr. Isaak's former firms had a duty to reasonably supervise him and can be sued in the FINRA arbitration process. Please call our Chicago-based securities attorneys to find out how to recover your investment losses. 312-332-4200.

Suing to Recover Investment Losses with Christopher Alan Taylor

Stoltmann Law Offices is investigating Christopher Alan Taylor, who entered into a Letter of Acceptance, Waiver and Consent (AWC) with the Financial Industry Regulatory Authority (FINRA) after allegations that he failed to provide testimony with FINRA after he allegedly took possession of a truck from a firm customer. Mr. Taylor was registered with Edward Jones in Kingsport, Tennessee. He is not currently licensed to act as a broker (buying and selling securities on behalf of customers,) or as an investment adviser (providing advice about securities to clients.) If you invested money with Christopher Alan Taylor, his former firm, Edward Jones, may be liable for your investment losses. They had a duty to reasonably supervise him and can be held liable for your losses. Please call us at 312-332-4200 to speak to an attorney.

Investigating Salvatore Gioe, PHX Financial and Legend Securities

Stoltmann Law Offices is investigating Salvatore Gioe, PHX Financial and Legend Securities. The Arkansas Securities Department recently suspended Mr. Gioe for one year for allegedly failing to abide by a previous regulatory order. Gioe was fined $15,000, including $10,000 upfront. Gioe told an investor he thought Uni-Pixel, Inc. was a "sure thing" when it actually was distressed. He is currently registered with Avenir Financial Group in Wellington, Florida. He has twelve customer disputes against him, four of which are currently pending. If you would like to sue Salvatore Gioe, please contact our law office at 312-332-4200 to speak to an attorney about your options. The cost is free and no obligation.

FINRA Bars President of Broker-Dealer and $1.5 Million Sanction Against Company

The Financial Industry Regulatory Authority (FINRA) announced an order requiring New York-based broker-dealer to pay over $1 million in restitution and $500,000 in fines for allegedly selling private placement offerings fraudulently. The firm did not perform its due diligence from January 2011 until October 2011, and allegedly benefitted from investing in pre-initial public offering shares of a California-based automaker. It also failed to disclose the criminal and regulatory background of a key individual in the scheme. Its president was barred from the industry. Please call us if you have claims against them at 312-332-4200 to speak to an attorney about recovering your losses.

Douglas Melzer Barred by FINRA over Aquatic Synthesis Unlimited Investments

The Financial Industry Regulatory Authority (FINRA) sanctioned and barred Douglas Melzer concerning allegations that he participated in four private securities transactions when four of his Wells Fargo Advisors customers invested $2,000,000 in Aquatic Synthesis Unlimited through investment contracts not approved by the brokerage firm. Melzer allegedly received at least $27,000 plus 2.5% member interest in the investment as compensation for the recommendations. He also failed to provide written notice to his member firm, which is known as selling away. Selling away is when a financial advisor solicits investments in companies, promissory notes, or other securities that are not pre-approved by the broker's affiliated firm.
Aquatic Synthesis is a gas drilling waste water treatment facility, and regulators have shut down operations. The state Department of Environmental Protection revoked the company's permit and used a bond to begin cleaning up the site. Mr. Melzer was registered with Wells Fargo Advisors in Sewickley, Pennsylvania from January 2008 until January 2013 and Park Avenue Securities in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania from March 2013 until January 2015. He is not currently registered with any FINRA member firm. He has three customer disputes against him, none of which are currently pending. If you would like to sue Douglas Melzer for investment losses, please call us at 312-332-4200. We are securities attorneys who specialize in recovering financial losses.

Wednesday, March 25, 2015

Suing Crown Capital Securities for REIT Sales

Stoltmann Law Offices is investigating Crown Capital Securities for their involvement in the sale of the following real estate investment trusts (REITs): Grubb & Ellis Healthcare, G-REIT, USA Self Storage REIT, CNL Senior Housing REIT, NNN Value Fund REIT, Inland Western REIT and Inland American REIT. Allegedly, Crown Capital made misrepresented material facts related to the sale of the above mentioned REITs. Recently, the Financial Industry Regulatory Authority (FINRA) awarded an investor $277,469 for investing in these REITs. Because REIT investments tend to be high-risk, investors who have invested and lost money in these investments may be able to recover these losses in the FINRA arbitration process. Please call our Chicago-based securities law firm at 312-332-4200 to speak to an attorney. The call is free and no obligation.

Recovering Losses with Leonid Yurovsky and Unsuitable ETFs

Stoltmann Law Offices is investigating Leonid Yurovsky and his firm, National Securities Corporation. Yurovsky allegedly engaged in excessive trading and unsuitable securities sales while acting as an agent for two customers. He also allegedly engaged in unsuitable securities sales for selling non-traditional exchange-traded funds (ETFs) to both customers. These ETFs are risky and speculative investments and are not meant to be held for long periods of time. Yurovsky held the ETFs for his clients for over a year until they were liquidated at a loss. Mr. Yurovsky is currently registered with National Securities Corporation. If you lost money with Mr. Yurovsky, we may be able to help you recover your investment losses. Please call us at 312-332-4200. We are securities attorneys who specialize in the area.