According to a FINRA disciplinary action announcement, Brian Harris Brunhaver (CRD #2498928, Snohomish, Washington) was recently barred from association with any FINRA member in any capacity.
The sanction was based on findings that Brunhaver, in violation of his member firm’s directive, used his personal email account for business purposes. The findings stated that by sending and receiving business-related email communications on his personal email account, Brunhaver frustrated his member firm’s efforts to fulfill its supervisory obligations and its obligation to maintain and preserve business-related communications. The findings also stated that Brunhaver sent email messages to a customer containing false statements about a real estate investment trust (REIT). Brunhaver falsely assured the customer that her invested principal was guaranteed, that the investment did not hold any risk and that she could not lose her money. Relying on Brunhaver’s representations, the customer invested $114,300 in the REIT. Brunhaver also sent a blast email to other customers containing similar false statements, emphasizing that the REIT guaranteed investors’ principal. The messages to these customers did not disclose the substantial risk of investing in the REIT. Brunhaver’s email representations to the customers met all of the elements of fraud. Brunhaver made the misrepresentations either knowing that they were false, or in reckless disregard of their falsity, in violation of Section 10(b) of the Securities Exchange Act of 1934 and Rule 10b-5. The findings also included that Brunhaver met with customers about investing in the REIT. In those meetings, Brunhaver personally represented, as he had in the emails, that the company guaranteed investments, and that investors could not lose money. These representations were important factors in the customer’s decision to invest in the REIT; and like the representations Brunhaver made in the emails, they were knowingly false, material, and made to induce the customer to invest in a security.
For the full findings, see FINRA Case #2011026852001.
According to his FINRA Broker Report, Brunhaver was registered with Pacific West Securities from August 2011 through December 2011 and LPL Financial from May 1995 through June 2011.
The foregoing information, which is all publicly available on FINRA’s website, is being provided by The White Law Group.
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