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Financial and Investment Fraud

This archive displays posts tagged as relevant to financial and investment fraud. You may also be interested in the following pages:

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July 28, 2022

Jaeson Birnbaum, disbarred attorney and owner of now-bankrupt litigation finance firm, Cash4Cases, will spend 3 years in prison for defrauding investors, in addition to paying over $2.6 million in restitution, and forfeiting another $2.6 million in fraud proceeds. Birnbaum offered sham “Investor Security Agreements,” allowing investors to share in recoveries from lawsuits supposedly purchased by Cash4Cases. Birnbaum netted over $3 million in investors’ funds through his fraud, misappropriated client funds for personal use, and directed his employee to falsify the company’s books and records to show already-paid-out funds as still available to be pledged as collateral to new investors. USAO SDNY

July 28, 2022

U.S. Bank will pay a $37.5 million penalty and is required to make harmed customers whole for illegally accessing their credit reports and opening new, unauthorized accounts in these customers’ names. The bank’s actions violated the Consumer Financial Protection Act, the Fair Credit Reporting Act, the Truth in Lending Act, and the Truth in Savings Act. The bank pressured its employees to hit certain sales goals and implemented an incentive-compensation program that financially rewarded employees for selling bank products. As a result, the bank’s customers held unwanted accounts, had negative effects on their credit profiles, and lost control over their personally identifiable information—not to mention the time-consuming hassle of closing unauthorized accounts and resolving other consequences stemming from this practice.  CFPB

July 27, 2022

Three registered broker-dealers have been ordered to pay civil penalties based on SEC findings that each had deficiencies in its programs to prevent customer identity theft, in violation of the SEC’s Identity Theft Red Flags Rule, or Regulation S-ID.  J.P. Morgan Securities LLC will pay $1.2 million, UBS Financial Services Inc. will pay $925,000, and TradeStation Securities, Inc. will pay $425,000.  The SEC found that the broker-dealers’ cybersecurity policies failed to detect identity theft red flags in connection with customer accounts or to incorporate those red flags into their programs, and that the firms failed to adequately train staff, failed to review and update the policies as required, did not include appropriate board oversight, and failed to oversee service provider arrangements.  SEC

July 22, 2022

Vanderpoel family members Neal J. II, Eileen, Ryan, and Neal J. IV will pay $1.88 million in penalties, disgorge their ill-gotten gains, and are barred from performing any loan modification, debt adjustment, or mortgage compliance in New Jersey because of their predatory mortgage adjustment services targeting distressed homeowners. The family violated New Jersey’s Consumer Fraud Act and the Debt Adjustment Act, selling worthless loan modification and other adjustment services to borrowers, and charged excessive upfront fees. The entities used in furtherance of the fraud—Financial Services of America, Financial Processing Services, LLC, Tri-State Financial Relief, LLC, and Mortgage Help and Loan Audits of America, LLC—were also shut down. NJ OAG

July 18, 2022

Equitable Financial Life Insurance Company has agreed to pay $50 million to settle charges of providing statements to 1.4 million variable annuity investors, which included public school teachers and staff, that failed to list all fees paid during the period.  In addition to the monetary settlement, Equitable has agreed to cease and desist from future violations and revise how it presents fee information.  SEC

July 15, 2022

An anonymous whistleblower was awarded $3 million based on SEC findings that the individual, who was solicited to invest in a product, expeditiously contacted the SEC to report misrepresentations regarding the product.  That report prompted the Commission to open an investigation, during which the individual provided additional assistance.  SEC

July 15, 2022

A number of California- and Colorado-based people and their affiliated entities have been ordered to pay over $29 million in total in order to resolve multiple charges of violating CFTC regulations.  A federal judge had found California-based John D. Black, his associates Christopher Mancuso and Joseph Tufo, and his entities Financial Tree, Financial Solution Group, and New Money Advisors—as well as Colorado-based John P. Glenn and his law firm—liable for solicitation fraud in connection with binary options and forex transactions, registration violations, and other charges.  CFTC

July 11, 2022

Attorney Shimon Rosenfeld was ordered to pay over $7 million in disgorgement and prejudgment interest and will spend 6 months in prison for defrauding real estate investors. For a period of nearly four years, from May 2014 to March 2018, Rosenfeld solicited investors for a pooled real estate investment fund whose profits would be split with the investors. Instead, Rosenfeld misappropriated the funds to trade securities in his personal brokerage account, resulting in a $6 million loss of investor funds. SEC

June 30, 2022

Interactive Brokers LLC has been ordered to pay over $1 million in disgorgement and civil monetary penalty for its failure to supervise employees’ handling of exchange fees charged to customers.  By failing to ensure that its employees accurately assessed fees, Interactive Brokers overcharged its customers over $710,000.  CFTC
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