The Investor’s Watchdog

The Investor's Watchdog

Michigan Registered Representative Consents to FINRA Bar after Refusing to Cooperate with Investigation Alleging Borrowing Client Funds

Tuesday, November 5, 2019

On October 8, 2019, the Financial Industry Regulatory Authority (FINRA) Department of Enforcement approved a Letter of Acceptance, Waiver and Consent (AWC) submitted by former Securities America, Inc. registered representative for failing to cooperate with a FINRA investigation.

According to his FINRA BrokerCheck report, Westenbarger was associated with several FINRA member firms out of Grand Rapids, Michigan since registering in the securities industry. More recently, Westenbarger has been associated with Invest Financial Corporation (March 2007 to April 2011), American Portfolios Financial Services, Inc. (April 2011 to March 2014), First Allied Securities, Inc. (March 2014 to May 2016), and Securities America, Inc. (May 2016 to September 2019). He was discharged from Securities America for “violating firm policies and procedures regarding borrowing funds from clients.” Shortly thereafter, FINRA began investigating Westenbarger for the allegations that led to his departure from Securities America.

On August 2, 2019, FINRA staff sent Westenbarger a written request to produce documents and information pursuant to FINRA 8210. Through his counsel, Westenbarger provided what FINRA Department of Enforcement considered to be a partial response since it did not comply with all aspects of the request. Then, during his counsel’s phone call with FINRA staff on September 30, 2019, Westenbarger stated that he would not produce additional documents.

Based on the foregoing, Westenbarger violated FINRA Rule 8210 and 2010. Without admitting or denying allegations made against him, he consented to a bar from associating with any FINRA member firm in any capacity.

Many times brokerage firms can be held liable for the brokers’ misconduct if they failed to supervise them while registered at the firm. If you lost money due to broker misconduct, you may be able to recover from your broker or the brokerage firm where he or she was registered. Since 1998, the experienced attorneys at ChapmanAlbin LLC have been fighting for victims of investment fraud and broker misconduct. Call us today at 1-877-410-8172 for a free consultation.

 

Author: Jason T. Albin

Jason Albin is an Attorney and Partner at ChapmanAlbin, the investor rights law firm. He has represented hundreds of investors who have lost money due to broker misconduct, unsuitable investment advice and fraud.​ Jason also represents individuals in “whistleblower” suits filed against unscrupulous companies that try to defraud the US federal and state governments.

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