According to the SEC press release, Parker told certain long standing clients and others that they were purchasing real estate tax lien certificates that would earn 6% to 9% returns annually. Unfortunately, the SEC says Parker only used a small amount of investors funds to purchase tax liens and instead used the money to remodel his house and pay other bills.
From 2008 to 2014, the SEC complaint accuses Parker of conducting the unregistered and fraudulent offering through his company Parker Financial Services. During that time, Parker was dually-registered as a representative of a broker-dealer firm and investment advisory firm. Parker failed to disclose his side business to the firm.
Parker’s BrokerCheck report indicates he was registered with Edward Jones from 06/2006 – 12/2014.
According to Sharon B. Binger, Director of the SEC’s Philadelphia Regional Office, “We allege that while Parker was using investor funds for his personal expenses, he provided investors with computer printouts of vacant lots or homes and falsely told them that his company held liens on those properties.”
Furthermore, the SEC complaint alleges Parker pooled the money solicited from investors into several bank accounts, from which he withdrew more than $650,000 in cash. Allegedly, an additional $197,000 was spent on point-of-sales transactions and $169,000 used for online bill payments.
In a parallel action, the U.S. Attorney’s Office for the Western District of Pennsylvania announced criminal charges against Parker.
The White Law Group is investigating what liability that Parker’s affiliated firm may have for his actions. When a FINRA registered representative conducts business outside the scope of the brokerage firm where they are registered, the act can be considered “selling away.” If a registered broker “sells away” from their firm, the brokerage firm may still be liable for negligent supervision of their broker representative and may be responsible for investment losses in a FINRA dispute resolution claim.
If you suffered losses investing with Bernard M. Parker and would like to discuss your potential to recover your losses through a FINRA arbitration claim, please call the securities attorney of The White Law Group at (312) 238-9650 for a free consultation.
The White Law Group, LLC is a national securities fraud, securities arbitration, investor protection, and securities regulation/compliance law firm with offices in Chicago, Illinois and Vero Beach, Florida.
To learn more about The White Law Group, visit www.WhiteSecuritesLaw.com.