FINRA Permanently Bars Omaha, Nebraska Stockbroker Robert John Head

Robert John Head consented to a permanent bar from the Financial Industry Regulatory Authority. FINRA alleged that Head exercised discretion in the account of an elderly customer, who was diagnosed with dementia, without obtaining the customer’s prior written consent to do so. Head was prohibited from placing any trading that the customer had not explicitly and specifically approved. Head also recommended unsuitable investments given the customer’s financial need and medical condition.

Robert John Head was previously registered with:

08/2008 – 01/2014            STIFEL, NICOLAUS & COMPANY, INC.; OMAHA, NE

05/2004 – 08/2008            WELLS FARGO INVESTMENTS, LLC; OMAHA, NE

10/1997 – 06/2004            ROBERT W. BAIRD & CO. INC.; MILWAUKEE, WI

If you had an account where you suffered losses due to unauthorized trading, contact Place & Hanley, LLC for no cost initial consultation.  Call (866) 318-4725.



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FINRA Suspends Stockbroker, Benjamin Brown, Jr. for Unauthorized Trading

The Financial Industry Regulatory Authority suspended stockbroker Benjamin Brown, Jr. for 10 days and fined him $5000 for unauthorized trading.

FINRA alleged that Brown effected option transactions while exercising discretion in a customer’s account without the customer’s prior written authorization to exercise such discretion and without written permission from his member firm to engage in such discretionary trading.

Brown is not currently registered with a FINRA member.  Brown was formerly registered with the following broker-dealers.


02/2012 – 05/2013 – WHITEWOOD GROUP, INC; GREAT NECK, NY





If you had an account where you suffered losses due to unauthorized trading, contact Place & Hanley, LLC for no cost initial consultation.  Call (866) 318-4725.

(866) 318-4725
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FINRA Bars Wilmington, Delaware Broker for Alleged Client Theft

The Financial Industry Regulatory Authority announced that they barred Michael E. Donnelly.  Donnelly was terminated by Coastal Equities, Inc.   Coastal Equities noted that the reason for termination was “misappropriation of client funds.”

FINRA opened an investigation thereafter but Donnelly failed to cooperate in FINRA’s investigation.  FINRA barred Donnelly from association with any FINRA member.

Donnelly was also associated with Coastal Investment Advisors, Inc., an SEC registered investment advisor.

If you believe that you may be a victim of theft by Michael Donnelly, contact Place & Hanley, LLC for a no fee initial consultation at 866-318-4725.

(866) 318-4725
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Chapin Davis Fined and Censured by FINRA

Chapin Davis was fined $35,000 and censured by the Financial Industry Regulatory Authority

According to FINRA, from March 2010 to October 2012, Chapin Davis sold approximately $24.5 million in structured notes and FDIC-insured structured certificates of deposit to retail customers. In connection with the sale of the structured products, Chapin Davis’ supervisory system and written supervisory procedures (“WSPs”) were inadequate, in that there was no system or WSPs for evaluating find conducting due diligence on the products, including determining risks and suitability issues, as applicable, and approving the products; the Firm offered limited training on the products; the WSPs included general provisions on suitability requirements, but did not specifically address the products or provide guidance or restrictions unique to the products, including assessment or consideration of customer-specific suitability, as applicable; and the Firm did not sufficiently review transactions in the products, including monitoring of accounts for over concentration of the products.

If you lost money in structured notes purchased by Chapin Davis, call (866) 318-4725 for a no fee initial consultation.

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Avoiding Investment Fraud

At the Law Offices of Place & Hanley, our goal is to protect and represent investors who have been victims of securities and stockbroker fraud. Our Naples, Florida stockbroker fraud lawyers have represented clients nationwide and are well-suited to help you if you’ve been a victim of fraud. Of course, you can also help yourself by following these tips to avoid investment fraud.

1). Be alert and do your homework

Like all big decisions, do not rush to invest. Ask questions, perform research, and make sure you know exactly what you’re investing in and with who. Frauds tend to be smooth talkers and rather than give you the information directly, they’ll try and divert your attention. They’ll try and grab you at the heat of the moment and it’s important to remember to take a step back and analyze. Check financial statements, company news, and make use of the SEC’s EDGAR filing system. Make use of all the tools available to you before you decide to invest.

2). Be aware of different types of fraud and unsolicited offers

There are all types of securities frauds ranging from pyramid schemes, ponzi schemes, and even internet and social media fraud. Protect yourself online and scrutinize everything you read. Frauds have made use of the internet and social media boom to create new opportunities for themselves. Just because there are good reviews online does not mean it comes from a genuine source. Know what to look for and be alert if the investment is foreign or offshore. If an investment sounds too good to be true, it probably is. There are no such things as guaranteed returns and if something is worth investing in, there will be no pressure to invest right at that moment. Every investment carries some risk. Frauds try to make you forget that simple fact by throwing fake promises and calls to action.

3). Contact the SEC, FINRA, or a Fort Meyers Stockbroker fraud attorney at the Law Offices of Place & Hanley for more information or help.

Fraud happens all the time and gets harder and harder to detect and prevent. You may not even realize you’ve been a victim of fraud until it’s too late and you’ve lost everything. Arm yourself with knowledge. Ask questions. Address concerns with the proper authorities. If you feel that you’ve encountered any type of investment fraud, contact the Naples Stockbroker fraud attorneys at the law offices of Place & Hanley for a free consultation.

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FINRA Arbitration Attorneys – Arbitration Process

We’ve gotten a few questions from clients and prospects about arbitration
and we thought it’d be a good time for one of our FINRA arbitration
attorneys to explain arbitration and the overall process. Continue reading

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Attention Purchasers of SignPath Pharma, Inc.

The Financial Industry Regulatory Authority (FINRA) filed a complaint against Meyers Associates, LP; Bruce Meyers and Imtiaz A. Kahn.  FINRA alleges that from January 2011 through June 2011, Meyers Associates, L.P. and its President, founder and indirect owner, Bruce Meyers marketed an unregistered offering for SignPath Pharma, Inc. a company for which the Firm, B. Meyers and another senior officer of Meyers, Imtiaz (“Raana”) Khan were majority owners. Through general solicitation, Meyers and B. Meyers marketed the Series A Offering to more than 1,000 recipients of boiler-plate emails, without first establishing a substantive relationship with each recipient.

FINRA also alleges that in marketing the SignPath Pharma, Inc. investment, Meyers,  made exaggerated and unbalanced claims and improper predictions of price performance. In addition, they omitted material facts, including full disclosure of Bruce Meyers’s, Khan’s and Meyers’s ownership interest in the company.

If you purchased SignPath Pharma, Inc. contact Place & Hanley, LLC for a no cost initial consultation.  Call (866) 318-4725


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Naples Broker James Clifford Eastman Suspended for Nine Months

The Financial Industry Regulatory Authority suspended a Naples, Florida broker for nine months. James Clifford Eastman consented to a nine month suspension and a $20,000 fine for selling away.

Selling away means that Eastman participated in a private securities transaction without providing prior written consent to his firm. Eastman was registered with Westport Resources Investment Services, Inc. and operates from a business known as Regional Family Offices. Eastman referred three of his firm’s customers to invest $875,000 in limited partnership interests offered by a company that were not approved for sale by the firm. Eastman participated by assisting customers with obtaining the funds from their brokerage accounts at his firm to purchase the limited partnerships.

Westport permitted Eastman to resign on or about October 1, 2012.  Eastman was previously discharged from his position at Morgan Stanley Smith Barney, LLC in January 2010.

If you invested in a Limited Partnership or had investment losses with James Clifford Eastman, contact Place & Hanley, LLC for a no cost initial consultation.

(239) 455-1242 or toll free at (866) 318-4725

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Securities Class Action Attorneys

Security fraud is a serious crime and it’s important to hold responsible parties accountable, especially with everything that has been recently happening with the economy and stock market since the Great Recession. Investors are more passionate in seeking justice and citizens are banding together to hold Wall Street Brokers accountable for their methods of conducting business.

Investors and citizens banding together to file a claim is expected, especially since brokerage firms and their stockbrokers hold the financial futures of many lives. Why risk wrongful actions with the lives and futures of so many on the line? Unfortunately, it happens and when it does, a class action suit is often the solution to bring justice to those that have done wrong. Class action suits bypass numerous individual lawsuits and save the courts from clogging up.

No one wants to put up with nonreturnable losses and after the turmoil during 2008; investors are making it a priority to keep all parties accountable. If you’ve been a victim of security fraud, contact the Securities class action attorneys at Place & Hanley. We will help you in receiving the justice you deserve.

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SEC Charges Sarasota Florida Investment Adviser with Securities Fraud

The Securities and Exchange Commission filed an injunction against Wealth Strategy Partners, LC (“Wealth Strategy”), a Sarasota, Florida company, and its principal, Harvey Altholtz of Sarasota, Florida.  The SEC alleges that they committed securities fraud involving two investment funds – The Stealth Fund, LLLP and The Adamas Fund, LLLP. Wealth Strategy and Altholtz controlled and managed the two funds and later served as investment advisers to the funds.

Apparently, the Stealth and Adamas Funds raised approximately $30.8 million from over 143 investors between 2007 and November, 2009. The complaint alleges that, from October 2008 through April 2010, the defendants failed to disclose in offering materials distributed to investors that Stealth’s assets could be used to guarantee certain loans that Altholtz’s family made to two portfolio companies that Stealth invested in and that his family also made loans to Adamas and Stealth in violation of the funds’ operating agreements. The complaint also alleges that Wealth Strategy and Altholtz committed fraud by giving an Altholtz family trust, who was an investor in Adamas, preferential treatment with regard to redemptions over other investors. The complaint further alleges that the defendants made misstatements and omissions in newsletters to investors regarding the financial condition of some of the funds’ portfolio companies.

If you have losses in The Stealth Fund, LLLP or The Adamas Fund, LLLP, please contact Place & Hanley, LLC at (239) 455-1242 for a no cost initial consultation.

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