The Financial Industry Regulatory Authority (“FINRA”) announced that it barred MSI Financial Services (MetLife Securities) financial advisor Benjamin Lowder Jr. (“Ben Lowder”) (CRD#: 3014106, Charlotte, North Carolina) from the securities industry. Evidently, Lowder, who worked for the brokerage firm from August 8, 2000 to February 22, 2017, executed a Letter of Acceptance, Waiver and Consent (the “AWC”) on September 23, 2019, which FINRA accepted October 2, 2019. Notably, the AWC shows that Lowder violated FINRA rules because he did not testify while under investigation for unfair and deceptive trading practices. Here’s more on the AWC:
FINRA Investigates Ben Lowder After Termination From MSI Financial Services
First of all, Rule 8210 authorizes FINRA to demand that a securities broker testify and provide documents to FINRA when it concerns its investigation. Typically, these investigations focus on whether the securities broker’s sales practices or other conduct runs afoul of FINRA rules. Most often, FINRA imposes the most severe of sanctions when a securities broker does not cooperate with testimony or documentation requests.
Here, MSI Financial Services contacted FINRA in May 2018 about two civil lawsuits regarding Ben Lowder. Those lawsuits alleged unfair and deceptive trade practices in connection with the client’s investments in “fictitious entities.” Supposedly, MSI Financial Services updated FINRA 4 additional times between 2018 to July 2019 to confirm 4 additional lawsuits about the registered representative.
FINRA stated that Lowder violated Rule 8210 by failing to testify. Indeed, FINRA allegedly contacted Ben Lowder in September 2019 about its investigation and told him to testify in order to comply with FINRA rules. The AWC shows that Lowder refused to appear and testify “at any time.” Because of this, FINRA was unable to draw any conclusion as to whether Lowder’s trading practices violated FINRA rules.
Ben Lowder Allegedly Linked To Ponzi Scheme
Allegedly, Ben Lowder is linked to another MetLife securities broker, Rick Siskey, who purportedly ran a Ponzi scheme which took investors for $4,500,000. Supposedly, between April 2018 and October 2018, investors filed several lawsuits in North Carolina to recover losses. One or more of those lawsuits makes reference to Lowder, where investors suggest that he helped or was otherwise complicit in Rick Siskey’s scheme. Allegedly, Lowder induced the individuals to invest in those companies linked to Siskey. Allegedly, Siskey tapped its existing investors’ funds to make payments to other investors, reflecting a Ponzi scheme. Not only that, but Siskey alleged used investors’ funds to gamble and buy luxurious items. Lowder denies the plaintiffs’ claims as to his involvement.
Investor Alleges Lowder Used Unfair And Deceptive Trade Practices
An investor and possible client of MSI Financial Services Inc. residing in North Carolina brought civil lawsuit #: 19CVS12902 on July 1, 2019. Mainly, the plaintiff alleged that Ben Lowder engaged in deceptive trading practices. Specifically, the plaintiff alleged that the deceptive actions concerned the financial advisor’s recommendations of private securities. It is possible that Lowder solicited private securities transactions behind MSI Financial Services’ back. Allegedly, the plaintiff sustained a minimum of $25,000 in damages in this pending matter.
Ben Lowder Allegedly Recommended Bad Private Securities
Another North Carolina resident brought civil lawsuit #: 19CVS5033 on March 18, 2019 about Ben Lowder. This claim is seemingly identical to the July 2019 lawsuit in which plaintiffs allege unfair, deceptive trading by Lowder. Supposedly, Lowder invested the plaintiffs’ assets in private securities from 2005 to 2016 which generated losses for the plaintiffs. Evidently, the plaintiffs demanded at least $25,000 in this ongoing matter.
Plaintiffs Allege Lowder Induced Clients To Invest In Fictitious Entity
Also, investors brought two different claims from April 30, 2018 to May 14, 2018. Both of the investors make reference to Lowder seemingly investing their assets in fictitious entities. Allegedly, in 2001, Ben Lowder deceptively induced the one plaintiff’s investments in a number of fake companies. The other plaintiff argued that Lowder caused the plaintiff to invest in a fake company in 2016. Both investors alleged that Lowder violated securities laws. These civil lawsuits await resolutions.
Investment Loss Lawyers
Suffer losses by investing with MSI Financial Services financial advisor Ben Lowder? If so, contact Soreide Law Group at (888) 760-6552 and speak with experienced counsel about a possible recovery of your investment losses. Soreide Law Group represents clients on a contingency fee basis and advances all costs. The law firm has recovered millions of dollars for clients who have suffered losses due to misconduct of brokers and brokerage firms.