Silver Law Group is investigating former Georgia-based SunTrust Investment Services, Inc. (CRD# 17499) broker Ryan E. Cox (CRD# 3018153) over allegations that he accepted cash gifts from his customers.
According to Cox’s FINRA BrokerCheck report, Cox was discharged in March 2015 by his former employer, Synovus Securities, Inc. (CRD# 14023). Synovus alleged that Cox and his wife received cash payments from an unrelated client and Cox knowingly allowed the naming of a spouse as a beneficiary of the same client’s variable annuity policy without disclosure to Synovus.
FINRA followed up Cox’s discharge with a suspension of two months in December 2016. The suspension was related to Cox’s acceptance of cash gifts and Cox falsely stating that he had not received those cash gifts. FINRA also levied a $15,000 fine on Cox.
Less than two weeks later, in January 2017, SunTrust allowed Cox to resign due to the FINRA suspension and fine.
Synovus employed Cox from 2002 to 2015. SunTrust employed Cox from 2015 to early 2017. Cox was based out of the Columbus, Georgia branches of both SunTrust and Synovus.
FINRA Rule 3220, also known as FINRA’s gift rule, prohibits any member or person associated with a member, directly or indirectly, from giving or receiving anything of value in excess of $100 per year to any person where such payment is in relation to the business of the recipient’s employer.
Receiving or giving a gift can appear as a conflict of interest. A gift from a broker can appear to be an attempt to woo a customer whereas a broker receiving a gift can appear as additional compensation outside of the member firm structure. In fact, the name of FINRA Rule 3220 is “Influencing or Rewarding Employees of Others.” As such, FINRA and the SEC require brokers and brokerage firms to avoid undisclosed conflicts of interest.
Contact Our Firm if You’ve Lost Money
FINRA arbitration is a fast, efficient way to recover your lost investment funds. We work on a contingency fee basis, meaning you pay us nothing unless we win and recover money for you.
If you have invested with Ryan E. Cox and SunTrust Investment Services and/or Synovus Securities and have lost money doing so, you may be able to recover some or all of your losses. Our lawyers are experienced in recovering investor losses due to broker and brokerage firm misconduct through FINRA arbitration.
Silver Law Group represents the interests of investors who have been the victims of investment fraud. If you have questions about your legal rights, please contact Scott Silver of the Silver Law Group for a free consultation at firstname.lastname@example.org or toll free at (800) 975-4345.