A National Securities Arbitration & Investment Fraud Law Firm

Articles Posted in SEC Actions

On September 10, 2020, the Unites States Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) filed a civil Complaint in U.S. District Court for the District of New Jersey against defendants RRBB Asset Management, LLC and Carl S. Schwartz. According to the “Summary” contained in the SEC’s Complaint, Schwartz engaged in “cherry picking,” the act of disproportionately allocating profitable trades to accounts held by certain clients while allocating less profitable trades to other clients. The SEC alleges that by engaging in “cherry picking,” RRBB and Schwartz earned substantial management fees and convinced their clients that RRBB and Schwartz were better money managers than they really were. This conduct, according to the SEC’s Complaint, violates the Securities Exchange Act of 1934 and the Investment Advisers Act of 1940.On September 10, 2020, the Unites States Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) filed a civil Complaint in U.S. District Court for the District of New Jersey against defendants RRBB Asset Management, LLC and Carl S. Schwartz. According to the “Summary” contained in the SEC’s Complaint, Schwartz engaged in “cherry picking,” the act of disproportionately allocating profitable trades to accounts held by certain clients while allocating less profitable trades to other clients. Continue reading ›

On September 3, 2020, the Unites States Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) commenced a civil action against Illinois resident Geoffrey Thompson. According to the SEC’s Complaint, from July 2014 through June 2019, an entity founded and controlled by Thompson, Covalent Collective, Inc., offered several different types of investments to approximately 500 investors, raising more than $19 million. According to the SEC’s Complaint, Geoffrey Thompson and Covalent used a variety of methods to solicit investors, including the use of unregistered broker-dealers, press releases, an investor relations firm, a public website, and a call center operated by Thompson’s company, Fortress Legacy. The SEC lists the following fraudulent offerings as part of its new lawsuit:  Advantameds Convertible Promissory Notes Covalent Warrants Covalent Common Stock Covalent Promissory NotesOn September 3, 2020, the Unites States Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) commenced a civil action against Illinois resident Geoffrey Thompson. According to the SEC’s Complaint, from July 2014 through June 2019, an entity founded and controlled by Thompson, Covalent Collective, Inc., offered several different types of investments to approximately 500 investors, raising more than $19 million. Continue reading ›

On July 17, 2020, the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC), brought fraud charges against David Hu, the co-founder and chief investment officer of International Investment Group (IIG), in Manhattan federal district court. A link to the charges can be found here.  The SEC is charging Hu with running multiple fraudulent schemes to misrepresent the performance and conceal losses in IIG’s Trade Opportunities Fund (TOF). In addition, Hu is alleged to have sold over $60 million in phony trade finance loans to investors, using the proceeds to pay back other customers who made redemption requests for earlier investments.On July 17, 2020, the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC), brought fraud charges against David Hu, the co-founder and chief investment officer of International Investment Group (IIG), in Manhattan federal district court. A link to the charges can be found here.

The SEC is charging Hu with running multiple fraudulent schemes to misrepresent the performance and conceal losses in IIG’s Trade Opportunities Fund (TOF). In addition, Hu is alleged to have sold over $60 million in phony trade finance loans to investors, using the proceeds to pay back other customers who made redemption requests for earlier investments. Continue reading ›

The Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) has charged former Morgan Stanley broker Michael Barry Carter with fraud for stealing from his customers, including an elderly client.  The complaint filed by the SEC alleges that Carter, a currently-barred broker who was last registered with Morgan Stanley in their McLean, Virginia office, made dozens of unauthorized wire transfers from his client’s accounts to his personal bank account, which amounted to millions of dollars. It is alleged that Carter falsified documents to make the transfers and made unauthorized sales of client’s securities.The Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) has charged former Morgan Stanley broker Michael Barry Carter with fraud for stealing from his customers, including an elderly client.

The complaint filed by the SEC alleges that Carter, a currently-barred broker who was last registered with Morgan Stanley in their McLean, Virginia office, made dozens of unauthorized wire transfers from his client’s accounts to his personal bank account, which amounted to millions of dollars. It is alleged that Carter falsified documents to make the transfers and made unauthorized sales of client’s securities. Continue reading ›

Our south Florida securities and investment fraud attorneys are investigating claims on behalf of investors in PAR Funding and related companies. On July 24, 2020, the Securities and Exchange Commission (“SEC”), brought an emergency action against a number of individuals and entities, including but not limited to John Gissas and his central-Florida based company, Retirement Evolution Group, LLC, for their roles in an alleged half billion dollar fraud scheme. The SEC brought its emergency action to immediately halt the nation-wide fraud, which is believed to have harmed over 1,200 investors. The SEC is seeking a temporary restraining order and by freezing assets. A link to the charges can be found here, which was unsealed on Friday, July 31, 2020.Our south Florida securities and investment fraud attorneys are investigating claims on behalf of investors in PAR Funding and related companies. On July 24, 2020, the Securities and Exchange Commission (“SEC”), brought an emergency action against a number of individuals and entities, including but not limited to John Gissas and his central-Florida based company, Retirement Evolution Group, LLC, for their roles in an alleged half billion dollar fraud scheme. Continue reading ›

Our south Florida securities and investment fraud attorneys are investigating claims on behalf of investors in PAR Funding and related companies. On July 24, 2020, the Securities and Exchange Commission (“SEC”), brought an emergency action against a number of individuals and entities, including but not limited to Dean J. Vagnozzi and his Pennsylvania-based company, A Better Financial Plan, for their roles in an alleged half billion dollar fraud scheme. The SEC brought its emergency action to immediately halt the nation-wide fraud, which is believed to have harmed over 1,200 investors. The SEC is seeking a temporary restraining order and by freezing assets. A link to the charges can be found here, which was unsealed on Friday, July 31, 2020.Our south Florida securities and investment fraud attorneys are investigating claims on behalf of investors in PAR Funding and related companies. On July 24, 2020, the Securities and Exchange Commission (“SEC”), brought an emergency action against a number of individuals and entities, including but not limited to Dean J. Vagnozzi and his Pennsylvania-based company, A Better Financial Plan, for their roles in an alleged half billion dollar fraud scheme. Continue reading ›

Our south Florida securities and investment fraud attorneys are investigating claims on behalf of investors in PAR Funding and related companies. On July 24, 2020, the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC), brought an emergency action against a number of individuals and entities, including but not limited to Michael C. Furman and his south-Florida based company, United Fidelis Group Corp., for their roles in an alleged half billion dollar fraud scheme. The SEC brought its emergency action to immediately halt the nationwide fraud, which is believed to have harmed over 1,200 investors. The SEC is seeking a temporary restraining order and by freezing assets. A link to the charges can be found here, which was unsealed on Friday, July 31, 2020.Our south Florida securities and investment fraud attorneys are investigating claims on behalf of investors in PAR Funding and related companies. On July 24, 2020, the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC), brought an emergency action against a number of individuals and entities, including but not limited to Michael C. Furman and his south-Florida based company, United Fidelis Group Corp., for their roles in an alleged half billion dollar fraud scheme. Continue reading ›

On July 24, 2020, the Securities and Exchange Commission (“SEC”), brought an emergency action against Par Funding and others, to obtain a temporary restraining order and freeze assets in order to halt a nearly half-billion dollar fraud scheme, harming over 1,200 across the U.S. A link to the charges can be found here, which was unsealed on Friday, July 31, 2020. In the Complaint, the SEC alleged that Joseph W. LaForte (a convicted felon) and his wife, Lisa McElhone orchestrated a scheme to defraud investors, using unregistered securities offerings for Complete Business Solutions Group (CBSG). CBSG was a cash advance company they controlled, that did business under the name “Par Funding.”On July 24, 2020, the Securities and Exchange Commission (“SEC”), brought an emergency action against Par Funding and others, to obtain a temporary restraining order and freeze assets in order to halt a nearly half-billion dollar fraud scheme, harming over 1,200 across the U.S. A link to the charges can be found here, which was unsealed on Friday, July 31, 2020.

In the Complaint, the SEC alleged that Joseph W. LaForte (a convicted felon) and his wife, Lisa McElhone orchestrated a scheme to defraud investors, using unregistered securities offerings for Complete Business Solutions Group (CBSG). CBSG was a cash advance company they controlled, that did business under the name “Par Funding.” Continue reading ›

The Variable Annuity Life Insurance Company (VALIC), a unit of AIG, was recently ordered to pay a penalty of $19,943,753 for—according to the SEC—breaching its fiduciary duty to clients in connection with its mutual fund sales practices. The SEC’s investigation into VALIC’s misconduct was part of a broader investigation into other misconduct by VALIC, including undisclosed and improper payments to a company owned by Florida teachers’ unions in exchange for the union’s endorsement and referrals of clients to VALIC.The Variable Annuity Life Insurance Company (VALIC), a unit of AIG, was recently ordered to pay a penalty of $19,943,753 for—according to the SEC—breaching its fiduciary duty to clients in connection with its mutual fund sales practices. The SEC’s investigation into VALIC’s misconduct was part of a broader investigation into other misconduct by VALIC, including undisclosed and improper payments to a company owned by Florida teachers’ unions in exchange for the union’s endorsement and referrals of clients to VALIC. Continue reading ›

Silver Law Group represents investors who have lost money due to stockbroker misconduct relating to variable annuities. The SEC settlement helps victims recover some money, but other investors may have suffered additional damages by unsuitable investments, improper recommendations to purchase variable annuities in tax free accounts and other misconduct. The Variable Annuity Life Insurance Company (VALIC), a unit of AIG, recently agreed to pay a $20 million settlement related to an action brought by the Securities and Exchange Commission. The SEC action related to VALIC making improper payments to a for-profit entity owned by Florida teachers’ unions in exchange for the unions’ endorsement of VALIC’s financial services. VALIC was in turn pushing improper investment products on investors without full disclosure of its arrangement with the union. The settlement was part of a larger $40 million settlement by VALIC related to a broader investigation into other VALIC misconduct.

The Variable Annuity Life Insurance Company (VALIC), a unit of AIG, recently agreed to pay a $20 million settlement related to an action brought by the Securities and Exchange Commission. The SEC action related to VALIC making improper payments to a for-profit entity owned by Florida teachers’ unions in exchange for the unions’ endorsement of VALIC’s financial services. VALIC was in turn pushing improper investment products on investors without full disclosure of its arrangement with the union. The settlement was part of a larger $40 million settlement related to a broader investigation into other VALIC misconduct. Continue reading ›

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