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Articles Tagged with stockbroker misconduct

Peter Gerhard Klaas (CRD# 2381681) is currently registered as a broker and investment advisor, and is employed at El Segundo, CA-based Cetera Advisor Networks since 05/2017. He is registered with Cetera in both Murray, UT and Las Vegas, NV, and licensed in Arizona, Idaho, Nevada and Utah.

Klaas was previously employed with Allegis Investment Services (05/2014-03/2017,) Signator Financial Services (04/2011-06/2014), and LPL Financial (09-2007-05/2011.)

The Colorado Division of Securities is currently investigating broker Klaas for along with broker Heath Bowen (CRD# 4824684) for putting advisory clients in high-risk and complex option trades that said clients didn’t understand. CDS is not requesting monetary damages in this pending investigation, but is asking for the revocation of Klaas’ licensure. This investigation began while Klaas was employed with Allegis.

When Hurricane Maria landed in Puerto Rico, it caused devastation to the island’s infrastructure, crops, homes and power grid that will take many years to repair. But the damages to Puerto Rico include losses in municipal bonds and the mutual funds that hold them, which were close to default even before the storm.

While the island still struggles to recover, it wasn’t the first catastrophic event to hit the island territory. In 2014, Puerto Rico was already headed for a severe financial crisis, with bond sales from Morgan Stanley brokers as the catalysts.

Morgan Stanley and Barclay’s were responsible for underwriting the island’s $3.5 billion sale in March 2014. This sale was the last major issue by Puerto Rico before declaring bankruptcy on May 3, 2017, for a debt restructuring amounting to $3.8 trillion. The island’s debt stood at $70 million, and it needed to restructure pensions of $49 million. This municipal bankruptcy was even bigger than the city of Detroit’s 2013 restructuring of $18 billion.

Stifel Nicolaus & Company broker/adviser William Harrison is involved in a pending customer dispute. William Harrison has spent 29 years in the securities industry and has been registered with Stifel Nicolaus & Company in Boca Raton, Florida since 2009.  Palm Beach County is home to a large retirement community and FINRA arbitration claims are generally heard in FINRA’s Boca Raton office.

In January 2018, an arbitration claim was filed alleging William Harrison, while employed at Stifel Nicolaus & Company, committed common law fraud, negligently misrepresented material facts, breached his fiduciary duty, and acted negligently in connection to investments in common and preferred stock. The customer is seeking $100,000 in damages in the pending complaint.

Contact Our Firm if You’ve Invested with William Harrison

Wells Fargo has disclosed a federal investigation into sales practice violations in customer 401(k)s after a whistleblower cited sales problems in customer accounts.

Multiple potential violations are disclosed including improper referrals, excessive fees and undisclosed conflicts of interest.  In the current bull market, many investors did not appreciate the fees being charged as their accounts were profitable and fees can be difficult to calculate.

Silver Law Group represents institutional and retail investors in claims for portfolio mismanagement, stockbroker misconduct and investment fraud.  If you believe your portfolio was mismanaged, excessively traded or your financial advisor purchased esoteric or high cost alternative investments, call us to discuss your legal rights toll-free (800) 975-4345 or e-mail at SSilver@silverlaw.com.

Broker Paul G. Shea (“Shea”)(CRD# 2868966) was permanently barred by FINRA commencing on July 16, 2015, for failing to respond to a FINRA request for information, pursuant to FINRA Rule 9552(d). Shea is barred from association with any FINRA member in any capacity. Shea failed to request termination of his suspension within 3 months of the date of his Notice of Suspension, and therefore, was automatically barred by FINRA (FINRA Rule 9552(h)).

Shea first became a registered securities broker in 1997 and was registered with Morgan Stanley DW Inc., from April 1997 – January 2006 (employed in Purchase, NY); and Wells Fargo Advisors, LLC from January 2006 – August 2014 (employed in Baltimore, MD).

According to FINRA, in 2014 a customer accused Shea of “investments that were an extreme departure from their investment directives” and “lack of contact from financial advisor, and financial losses.” Shea settled the claim with the customer in the amount of $25,000.

Michigan broker Kenneth Hornyak (“Hornyak”)(CRD# 2990144), was permanently barred by the Financial Industry Regulatory Authority (“FINRA”) and is no longer licensed to act as a broker, or otherwise associate with firms that sell securities to the public. Hornyak is barred from association with any FINRA member in any capacity.

According to FINRA, while employed as a broker at member firm Stifel, Nicolaus & Co., Inc. (“Stifel Nicolaus”), Hornyak exercised discretion in a client’s account without written authorization from the client. In January 2014, Stifel Nicolaus discharged Hornyak based on those allegations for violating firm policy. FINRA further alleged that Hornyak engaged in unauthorized trading and unsuitable short-term trading in Unit Investment Trusts (“UIT”). FINRA requested on-the-record testimony from Hornyak, however, Hornyak refused to comply and failed to appear for that questioning. As a result of his failing to cooperate with an investigation, FINRA permanently barred Hornyak from the financial industry. Hornyak consented to FINRA’s findings while neither admitting nor denying the allegations against him.

Hornyak was employed as a registered representative by Stifel Nicolaus from March 2006 through January 2014. Prior to that, Hornyak was employed in Purchase, New York by Morgan Stanley, Inc., from January 1998 through March 2006. According to FINRA, Hornyak’s CRD shows several customer complaints against him accusing Hornyak of securities violations including excessive trading (“churning”), unsuitable investments and unauthorized trading. He was also the subject of two employment terminations for cause (one as noted above). Furthermore, customers have settled disputes against Hornyak in the amounts of $90,000, $50,000 and $10,000.

New York broker and financial advisor Paul Padovani (CRD# 2688559) was suspended by FINRA (Financial Industry Regulatory Authority) for four months from associating with any FINRA firm in any capacity, for borrowing $75,000 from a customer. Padovani’s actions violated FINRA Rules 3240 and 2010. According to his Letter of Acceptance Waiver and Consent, Padovani repaid the loan but did not obtain approval prior to his taking the funds from his employer, Metlife Securities Inc. Padovani consented, without admitting or denying the allegations made against him by FINRA, to a four-month suspension in resolution of his disciplinary proceeding. The suspension is in effect from May18, 2015, through September 17, 2015.

Padovani began his employment with MetLife Securities in 2012.  He was previously employed by Morgan Stanley & Co. from 2009-2012, and Wachovia Securities LLC from 2003-2009.

If you invested money with Paul Padovani, Metlife Securities, Inc., Morgan Stanley, or Wachovia Securities and suffered losses, you may be entitled to recover some or all of those investment losses. Please call our securities law firm toll free at (800) 975-4345 to speak with an experienced attorney, and to find out how we may be able to help you to regain some or all of your losses. Most cases are handled on a contingent fee basis, meaning that you do not pay legal fees unless we are successful in your lawsuit.

Broker Salim Lyazidi (CRD# 4617448) was permanently barred by FINRA commencing on March 9, 2015, for failing to respond to a FINRA request for information, pursuant to FINRA Rule 9552(d). Lyazidi is barred from association with any FINRA member in any capacity. Lyazidi failed to request termination of his suspension within 3 months of the date of his Notice of Suspension, and therefore, was automatically barred by FINRA (FINRA Rule 9552(h)).

Lyazidi first became a registered securities broker in 2003 and was employed by the following broker-dealers from 2003- 2014: Citigroup Global Markets Inc. (Coral Gables, FL), Banc of America Investment Services, Inc. (Miami, FL), Pointe Capital, Inc. (Boca Raton, FL), JHS Capital Advisors, LLC (Coconut Grove, FL), Kovack Securities Inc. (Coconut Grove, FL), and Cabot Lodge Securities LLC (New York, NY).

According to FINRA, in 2014 a customer accused Lyazidi of irregular transactions and false documentation apparently created and submitted by Lyazidi himself. Lyazidi settled the claim with the customer. Furthermore, felony criminal charges are currently pending against Lyazidi for credit card or debit card abuse in a Texas court.

Broker Ralph Oelbermann (CRD# 1962900) was permanently barred by the Florida Office of Financial Regulation (“OFR”) and fined $110,000 by state regulators commencing on October 24, 2014, for failing to respond to a Complaint by the OFR . He was terminated after customers allegedly reported unauthorized trading in their accounts. The Complaint that was brought by the OFR alleged that Oelbermann falsified customer account documents and conducted fraudulent securities transactions. Furthermore, Oelbermann was permanently barred by FINRA commencing on May 20, 2015, for failing to respond to a FINRA request for information, pursuant to FINRA Rule 9552(d). Oelbermann is permanently barred from association with any FINRA member in any capacity. He failed to request termination of his suspension within 3 months of the date of his Notice of Suspension, and therefore, was automatically barred by FINRA (FINRA Rule 9552(h)).

Oelbermann first became a registered securities broker in 1989 and was registered with the following securities firms from 1989-2013: Hibbard Brown & Co., Inc. (New York, NY ), Corporate Securities Group, Inc. (St. Louis, MO), Investors Associates, Inc. (Hackensack, NJ), Worthington Capital Group, Inc. (Garden City, NY), First Union Securities Financial Network, Inc. . (St. Louis, MO), Gunnallen Financial, Inc. (Palm Beach Gardens, FL), National Securities Corp. (Boca Raton, FL), Securities America, Inc. (Palm Beach Gardens, FL), LPL Financial LLC (Palm Beach Gardens, FL), and J.W. Cole Financial, Inc. (Palm Beach Gardens, FL).

According to FINRA, in September, 2013, Oelbermann was discharged by his employer, LPL Financial, for unauthorized trading involving mutual funds. He also had additional customer complaints filed against him in 2001 and 2002 for allegations concerning misrepresentation, fraud, excessive and unauthorized trading, and unsuitability. In these cases, the customers were awarded reparations.

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