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FINRA Disciplinary Actions November 2019

FINRA Disciplinary Actions November 2019

When brokers violate FINRA rules or federal securities regulations—by borrowing money from customers, forging documents, or refusing to provide on-the-record testimony to FINRA—the Financial Industry Regulatory Authority holds them to account. FINRA publicizes disciplinary actions taken against brokers in their monthly round-up. The full November 2019 report can be viewed here.

In the most serious cases of broker fraud or misconduct, FINRA permanently bars brokers from the securities industry. FINRA’s November 2019 report lists 13 barred brokers.

Individuals Barred

Broker Name CRD Number Location Circumstances Surrounding Bar
Stefan Pastor CRD#: 5141819 Fort Lauderdale, Florida “…he provided false information to FINRA during on-the-record testimony during the course of an investigation related to a customer complaint that alleged he executed unauthorized trades for, and that he provided false trade confirmations to, a customer of his member firm.”
Mike Carter CRD#: 3232017 Potomac Falls, Virginia “…he failed to provide documents and information requested by FINRA during the course of an investigation initiated after FINRA received an external tip relating to allegations of misconduct that were ultimately contained in a Form U5 filed by his member firm.”
Jack Howley CRD#: 2229244 Rumson, New Jersey “…he refused to appear and provide an on-the-record testimony requested by FINRA in connection with its investigation into allegations reported by his member firm in a Form U5 stating that he failed to disclose private securities transactions to the firm and referred clients to outside investments.”
Jack Stone CRD#: 437327 Chicago, Illinois “…he refused to appear for on-the-record testimony requested by FINRA in connection with an investigation into his securities activities while at his member firm, including possible misrepresentations to customers, use of discretion and unauthorized transactions.”
Heather Baker CRD#: 4920460 Huntsville, Alabama “…she refused to appear for on-the-record testimony requested by FINRA in connection with an investigation into the circumstances surrounding her resignation from her member firm. The findings stated that Baker was permitted to resign while under review for the possible violation of the firm’s bank affiliate’s employee expenses policy.”
Clayton Wertz CRD#: 2931973 Dallas, Texas “…he created false account statements for a customer in connection with helping the customer secure a bank loan for $1.872 million.”
Thomas Stappas CRD#: 855198 Bridgewater, New Jersey “…he refused to provide documents and information requested by FINRA in connection with its investigation into allegations that he engaged in outside business activities, and recommended private securities transactions to customers of his member firm.”
Donald Teboe CRD#: 4407610 Clinton, Michigan “…he refused to appear for on-the-record testimony requested by FINRA in connection with an investigation into allegations that he engaged in unsuitable trading while registered through multiple member firms.”
Kevin Gunnip CRD#: 2701801 Colleyville, Texas “…he refused to appear for on-the-record testimony requested by FINRA in connection with its investigation into allegations that Gunnip engaged in unsuitable short-term trading of long-term securities.”
Joseph Pratt CRD#: 719416 Radnor, Pennsylvania “…he misused the confidential information obtained from insiders at a public biopharmaceutical company by communicating it to several of his member firm’s customers.”
Keith Wakefield CRD#: 3250539 Evanston, Illinois “…he refused to appear for on-the-record testimony requested by FINRA in connection with its investigation of him for, among other things, possible trading improprieties at his member firm.”
Victor Polakoff CRD#: 365011 Atlantic Highlands, California “…he refused to appear for on-the-record testimony requested by FINRA in connection with its investigation into certain municipal bond offerings.”

 

Individuals Suspended

Broker Name CRD Number Location Duration of Suspension Circumstances Surrounding Suspension
Rob McNamara CRD#: 2265046 Rye, New York September 16, 2019 through October 25, 2019. “…failed to disclose to his member firm brokerage accounts held at another FINRA member firm. … improperly purchased equity initial public offering (IPO) shares in an account held at the other firm and provided inaccurate information to that firm in order to purchase those shares.”
Daniel Staudacher CRD#: 2878221 Lantana, Texas October 7, 2019 through December 6, 2019 “…he engaged in securities business, and thereby associated with his member firm while under a FINRA suspension. … to accommodate his customers, Staudacher electronically affixed their signatures on new securities account applications by entering the last four digits of their social security numbers on the applications.”
Peter Plaut CRD#: 2174346 London, United Kingdom September 16, 2019 through June 15, 2020 “…he engaged in outside business activities, including employment as a broker at a foreign broker-dealer, without providing prior written notice to his member firms.”
Jeffrey Vasiloff CRD#: 3180004 Vermillion, Ohio October 7, 2019 through October 18, 2019 “…exercised discretion in a customer account without written authorization from the customer.”
Clay Elder CRD#: 1583644 Ogden, Utah September 16, 2019 through June 15, 2020 “…he effected unauthorized transactions, totaling $5,317,233.32, in his customers’ variable annuity accounts.”
Melissa Strouse CRD#: 3200452 Cave Creek, Arizona September 16, 2019 through January 15, 2020 “…she failed to timely update Uniform Application for Securities Industry Registration or Transfer (Form U4) forms for representatives of her member firm to disclose outstanding liens, judgments, bankruptcies and compromises with creditors, despite having notice of those events.”
Patrick Pachciarz CRD#: 5337955 Plainfield, Illinois September 16, 2019 through March 15, 2020 “…he engaged in an undisclosed and an unapproved private securities transaction involving the sale of a $500,000 note to an investor.”
Shirley Craft CRD#: 1957345 Foster City, California September 16, 2019 through January 15, 2020 “…she borrowed $35,000 from a customer of her member firm without obtaining pre-approval from the firm or otherwise disclosing the loan.”
Christopher Childers CRD#: 2175772 Johnston, Iowa October 7, 2019 through February 6, 2020 “…he failed to timely execute a customer’s transaction resulting in an almost four-month delay in the customer’s purchase of a variable annuity. The findings stated that in order to belatedly execute this transaction, Childers re-dated the customer’s variable annuity application, thus falsifying the document and causing his member firm to maintain inaccurate books and records.”
Lori Thompson CRD#: 2416616 Milton, Massachusetts October 7, 2019 through December 6, 2019 “…she caused her member firm to effect unauthorized transfers totaling $367,387.57 by falsely attesting that she had spoken with the customer to confirm the information on disbursement request forms when, in fact, she had not done so. The findings stated that in response to an earlier email chain between her and the customer, Thompson received an email from an imposter purporting to be the customer and requesting that the firm send $68,740.55 from the customer’s brokerage account to a third party. Thompson received two additional emails from an impostor purporting to be the customer requesting that two checks be sent to one third party and two checks be sent to another third party for a total of $298,646.92. On each occasion, Thompson issued the checks and completed client contact attestation forms, falsely attesting that she had spoken to the customer to confirm the disbursement requests when she had not.”
David Vanech CRD#: 5195259 Providence, Rhode Island October 21, 2019, through January 20, 2020 “…he requested his client service associate at his member firm complete his firm element CE [continuing education] modules on his behalf. The findings stated that Vanech did not complete the training himself.”
David Manor CRD#: 6033220 Brookline, Massachusetts October 7, 2019 through July 6, 2020 “…he participated in an unapproved outside business activity with his customer, a then 75-year-old retiree with limited income. The findings stated that Manor assisted the customer in selling mineral rights on a property the customer owned. In return for Manor’s assistance, the customer paid him $107,000. Manor failed to disclose his participation in the mineral rights sale, or his compensation from this participation, to his firm.”
Raleigh Kraft CRD#: 1036719 Front Royal, Virginia October 21, 2019, through December 19, 2019 “…he caused his member firm to fail to review and retain emails concerning business-related matters among its books and records by using a personal email address to communicate with securities customers.”

If your broker has been suspended or barred from the securities industry, don’t hesitate to contact a securities attorney. Call (877) 238-4175 or email info@fkesq.com for your free consultation.

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