Thomas EisenhuthPublic records published by the Financial Industry Regulatory Authority (FINRA) on July 16, 2018 indicate that Florida-based Ameriprise Financial Services broker/adviser Thomas Eisenhuth has received pending customer disputes. Fitapelli Kurta is interested in speaking to investors who have complaints regarding Mr. Eisenhuth (CRD# 4364320).

Thomas Eisenhuth has spent 17 years in the securities industry and has been registered with Ameriprise Financial Services in Winter Park, Florida since July 2017. Previous registrations include Morgan Stanley in Winter Park, Florida (2009-2017); Morgan Stanley & Company in Winter Park, Florida (2009); Merrill Lynch in Winter Park, Florida (2002-2009); and First Union Securities in St. Louis, Missouri (2001-2002). He has passed five securities industry examinations: Series 65 (Uniform Investment Adviser Law Examination), which he obtained on June 4, 2002; Series 63 (Uniform Securities Agent State Law Examination), which he obtained on April 13, 2001; Series 31 (Futures Managed Funds Examination), which he obtained on April 27, 2010; Series 7 (General Securities Representative Examination), which he obtained on May 7, 2002; and Series 6 (Investment Company Products/Variable Contracts Representative Examination), which he obtained on April 10, 2001. He is a registered broker and investment adviser with 29 US states and territories.

According to his BrokerCheck report, he has received three pending customer complaints.

Ronald Calvin

Publicly available records provided by the Financial Industry Regulatory Authority (FINRA) and accessed on July 16, 2018 indicate that former Washington-based Hilltop Securities broker/adviser Ronald Calvin is involved in a pending customer dispute and is currently not affiliated with any broker-dealer firm. Fitapelli Kurta is interested in hearing from investors who have complaints regarding Mr. Calvin (CRD# 1155195).

Ronald Calvin has spent 35 years in the securities industry and was most recently registered with Hilltop Securities in White Salmon, Washington (2008-2018). He was previously registered with ML Stern & Company in Beverly Hills, California (1983-2008). He has passed four securities industry examinations: Series 65 (Uniform Investment Adviser Law Examination), which he obtained on December 2, 1999; Series 63 (Uniform Securities Agent State Law Examination), which he obtained on April 2, 1984; Series 7 (General Securities Representative Examination), which he obtained on July 16, 1983; and Series 24 (General Securities Principal Examination), which he obtained on February 12, 2001. He is currently not registered with any state or firm.

According to his BrokerCheck report, he has received one pending customer complaint.

Cryptocurrencies The Financial Industry Regulatory Authority (FINRA) issued a regulatory notice (18-20) on July 6, 2018 titled: “FINRA Encourages Firms to Notify FINRA if They Engage in Activities Related to Digital Assets.” In summary, the notice request that firms “promptly notify FINRA” if they or their associated persons or affiliates are presently engaging or intend to engage in “any activities related to digital assets, such as cryptocurrencies and other virtual coins or tokens.”

As the notice observes, the market for digital assets like cryptocurrencies “has grown significantly” in recent years, becoming more attractive to retail investors. However, the market has seen “incidences of fraud and other securities law violations,” which raise concerns for investors. Hence FINRA reminds firms involved in digital assets to bear in mind all relevant state laws, rules and regulations. It has also requested that firms inform their Regulatory Coordinator if they or their persons or affiliates are involved in, or intend to be involved in, a number of activities including:

–“purchases, sales or executions of transactions in digital assets;

Stephen KowalskiPublic records published by the Financial Industry Regulatory Authority (FINRA) and accessed on July 111, 2018 indicate that New Jersey-based Hennion & Walsh broker/adviser Stephen Kowalski has received new pending customer disputes. Fitapelli Kurta is interested in hearing from investors who have complaints regarding Mr. Kowalski (CRD# 1919574).

Stephen Kowalski has spent 28 years in the securities industry and has been registered with Hennion & Walsh in Parsippany, New Jersey since 1990. Previous registrations include Municipal Investment Service in Newark, New Jersey (1989-1990) and Halpert & Company in Millburn, New Jersey (1989). He is a registered broker and investment adviser with 36 US states and territories.

According to his BrokerCheck report, he has received one customer complaint and three pending customer complaints.

Thomas LaganPublicly available records provided by the New York Attorney General’s Office and accessed on July 11, 2018 indicate that the state’s Attorney General, Barbara Underwood, has obtained a grand jury indictment of financial advisor Thomas Lagan, as well as former judge Richard Sherwood, in connection to allegations that the two “orchestrated a complex scheme to steal millions from trusts they were supposed to protect.” Fitapelli Kurta is interested in hearing from investors who have complaints regarding Mr. Lagan.

According to the state’s complaint, the defendants offered estate planning and related service, both legal and financial, to “Capital Region philanthropists Warren and Pauline Bruggeman and Pauline Bruggeman’s sister, Anne Urban, since at least 2006.” Each of these clients had created a revocable trust, with sub-trusts for Anne Urban as well as Pauline Bruggeman’s other sister, Julia Rentz; there were also “other funds… to be awarded to Anne Urban and Julia Rentz outright” after the Bruggemans’ deaths, per the complaint. When the Anne S. Urban Irrevocable Trust was established in 2007, “using some of the funds from the Bruggeman trusts,” Mr. Sherwood was named as Trustee while Mr. Lagan was named as a Successor Trustee.

The complaint alleges that funds through the Anne S. Urban Irrevocable Trust were improperly disposed: though one sub-trust containing about two million dollars was intended “to be returned to the Pauline Bruggemen Revocable Trust for distribution to six named charities upon Anne Urban’s death,” according to the complaint, those funds were instead disposed through the Anne S. Urban Irrevocable Trust “primarily for the benefit of Sherwood and Lagan.” The defendants also allegedly participated in a conspiracy “to deceive an Ohio attorney” into transferring more than two million dollars’ of Julia Rentz’s funds to the trust, “under the premise it would be sent to charity,” when in fact Mr. Sherwood and Mr. Lagan “shared” the funds. The complaint states that they created an entity called the Empire Capital Trust “to benefit themselves,” funding it with more than $1,000,000 in ill-gotten funds: “In January 2015, they allegedly transferred $3,598,908 from AUIT to a Trustco Bank account in Sherwood’s name and $2,693,865.92 from the AUIT to a Trustco Bank account in Lagan’s name.”

Gogo Inc.Publicly available records indicate that a class action lawsuit has been filed on behalf of investors in Gogo Inc. (NASDAQ:GOGO) in connection to alleged violations of securities laws by GOGO. Fitapelli Kurta is interested in hearing from investors who have complaints regarding investments made in Gogo Inc. from February 27, 2017 until May 7, 2018.

The class action complaint specifically alleges that during the period in question, GOGO might have provided false and/or misleading material information, and/or failed to disclose adverse material information to the public, namely: that the company’s 2Ku antenna was experiencing a greater number of reliability issues than had been previously represented to the public; that the antennas needed expensive installation and remediation challenges, or they otherwise needed to be replaced as a result of infiltration by aircraft deicing fluids and other concerns relating to the antennas’ manufacturing and software; that as a result of the foregoing, the company would not meet its previously issued guidance for 2018; and that consequently the company’s financial statements during the relevant period were false and misleading. The complaint alleges that when true details emerged, investors suffered losses.

According to the company’s website, Gogo Inc. is “the leading global provider of in-flight broadband connectivity and connectivity-enabled services to commercial and business aviation.” It provides aircraft operates with internet services for passengers and crew, servicing more than 3,000 commercial aircraft and 4,200 buesiness aircraft, according to its description, which states that the company also has obtained “awards to install our latest generation global satellite solution, 2Ku, on approximately 1,500 commercial aircraft (of which approximately 130 have been installed).” The company trades on the Nasdaq exchange under the symbol GOGO.

Hector RamosPublic records provided by the Financial Industry Regulatory Authority (FINRA) and accessed on June 27, 2018 indicate that New York-based Westpark Capital broker/adviser Hector Ramos has received a customer dispute and a FINRA sanction. Fitapelli Kurta is interested in hearing from investors who have complaints regarding Mr. Ramos (CRD# 4172477).

Hector Ramos has spent 18 years in the securities industry and has been registered with Westpark Capital in New York, New York since 2016. Previous registrations include Bishop Rosen & Company in New York, New York (2014-2016); Morgan Stanley in New York, New York (2011-2014); Merrill Lynch in New York, New York (2008-2011); Morgan Stanley & Company in New York, New York (2007-2008); Morgan Stanley DW in New York, New York (2007); ING Financial Partners in New York, New York (2006-2007); AIG Financial Advisors in New York, New York (2005-2006); SunAmerica Securities in Phoenix, Arizona (2002-2005); and Prudential Securities in New York, New York (2000-2002). He has passed four securities industry examinations: Series 65 (Uniform Investment Adviser Law Examination), which he obtained on July 24, 2000; Series 63 (Uniform Securities Agent State Law Examination), which he obtained on July 8, 2000; Series 31 (Futures Managed Funds Examination), which he obtained on February 23, 2007; and Series 7 (General Securities Representative Examination), which he obtained on June 17, 2000. He is a registered broker and investment adviser with three US states: California, New Jersey, and New York.

According to his BrokerCheck report, he has received one customer complaint, one FINRA sanction, and one unsatisfied civil judgment or lien, and he was discharged from a former employer in connection to alleged rule violations.

https://images.unsplash.com/photo-1518316847866-651fbb917956?ixlib=rb-0.3.5&ixid=eyJhcHBfaWQiOjEyMDd9&s=9749566038e89683cba08ee3fb69dc02&w=1000&q=80Publicly available records provided by the Financial Industry Regulatory Authority (FINRA) and accessed on June 27, 2018 indicate that New York-based UBS Financial Services broker/adviser Patrick Donohue has received several customer disputes. Fitapelli Kurta is interested in hearing from investors who have complaints regarding Mr. Donohue (CRD# 1029917).

Patrick Donohue has spent 36 years in the securities industry and has been registered with UBS Financial Services in New York, New York since 2012. Previous registrations include Merrill Lynch in New York, New York (1988-2012); Shearson Lehman Hutton (1988); EF Hutton & Company (1984-1988); and Merrill Lynch (1982-1984). He has passed four securities industry examinations: Series 65 (Uniform Investment Adviser Law Examination), which he obtained on October 17, 1994; Series 63 (Uniform Securities Agent State Law Examination), which he obtained on May 26, 1983; Series 5 (Interest Rate Options Examination), which he obtained on March 2, 1982; and Series 7 (General Securities Representative Examination), which he obtained on January 16, 1982. He is a registered broker and investment adviser with 24 US states and territories: Arizona, California, Colorado, Connecticut, Delaware, the District of Columbia, Florida, Georgia, Illinois, Indiana, Maine, Massachusetts, Missouri, New Hampshire, New Jersey, New York, North Carolina, Ohio, Pennsylvania, South Carolina, Texas, Virginia, Washington, and Wisconsin.

According to his BrokerCheck report, he has received four customer complaints and two unsatisfied judgments or liens.

BettermentAccording to Financial Industry Regulatory Authority (FINRA) records and a June 22, 2018 report by Investment News, FINRA has issued a $400,000 fine against the online investment advice company Betterment in connection to allegations Betterment FINRA rules related to customer protection and the proper maintenance of books and records.

Betterment Securities, a FINRA member and wholly owned subsidiary of Betterment Holdings, Inc., offers brokerage services to clients of Betterment LLC, a registered investment adviser and also a subsidiary of Betterment Holdings. Betterment LLC “operates as an online wealth management service,” according to FINRA, and Betterment Securities’ customer base is composed of Betterment LLC’s clients. Created in 2010, Betterment LLC “uses software algorithms and technology to maintain its customers’ investment portfolios,” and Betterment Securities is a carrying firm that offers brokerage services to Betterment LLC’s customers; according to FINRA, it “has a primary responsibility to protect its customers’ assets.”

Despite that responsibility, according to FINRA, Betterment Securities failed to ensure its practices were in compliance with FINRA and SEC rules. For instance, between October 2013 and January 2015, it “structured its transactions on days when it was required to calculate its reserve deposits differently than on other days in order to reduce its Customer Reserve Account obligations. That is, the firm allegedly transferred client deposits to an omnibus account that “to fund its pre-settlement withdrawal program,” but on other days, when it was “required to compute its customer reserve requirement,” it did not transfer customer deposits but rather funded the program with loans from its clearing firm. In so doing, FINRA alleges, the firm “engaged in ‘window dressing'” by altering its practices to reduce its reserve requirement.

Tomas GiraldoPublicly available records published by the Financial Industry Regulatory Authority (FINRA) and accessed on June 26, 2018 indicate that former California-based Merrill Lynch broker/adviser Jose Giraldo, also known as Tomas Giraldo, was recently discharged from his former employer in connection to alleged rule violations and is currently not affiliated with any broker-dealer firm. Fitapelli Kurta is interested in hearing from investors who have complaints regarding Mr. Giraldo (CRD# 5429476).

Jose Giraldo has spent four years in the securities industry and was most recently registered with Merrill Lynch in Chula Vista, California (2013-2018). He was previously registered with David Lerner Associates in Princeton, New Jersey (2012). He has passed three securities industry examinations: Series 66 (Uniform Combined State Law Examination), which he obtained on January 11, 2014; Series 63 (Uniform Securities Agent State Law Examination), which he obtained on April 2, 2012; and Series 7 (General Securities Representative Examination), which he obtained on March 20, 2012. He is currently not registered with any state or firm.

According to his BrokerCheck report, he was recently discharged from his former employer and he has received three unsatisfied tax liens.

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