Boca Raton, Florida Fraud, Mismanagement and Negligent Supervision FINRA Arbitration and Litigation Attorney, Russell L. Forkey, Esq.
CBG Financial Group, Inc. (CRD #6578, Boca Raton, Florida) submitted a Letter of
Acceptance, Waiver and Consent in which the firm was censured and fined $50,000. Without admitting or denying the findings, the firm consented to the described sanctions and to the entry of findings that it allowed a statutorily disqualified person to associate with the firm. The findings stated that the individual acted in an associated capacity for the firm, with its knowledge and consent, by keeping regular business hours at the firm, maintaining a desk at the firm’s office, a telephone extension at the firm, and a firm sponsored email account; regularly communicating with customers in an effort to maintain their accounts at the firm and to preserve his relationships with them; and handling administrative matters for the firm. The findings also stated that the firm initiated numerous telephone solicitations to persons whose numbers were in the national do-not call registry of the Federal Trade Commission (DNC Registry) at the time of the calls. The findings also included that to achieve compliance with telemarketing rules and regulations, the firm used, and still uses, a system that blocks outbound phone calls to phone numbers in the DNC Registry. FINRA found that in order to call a phone number in the DNC Registry from a firm phone line, the firm must manually place the number on a list in the system (Allow List); calls to phone numbers on the Allow List bypass the screening system, irrespective of whether the number is in the DNC Registry. FINRA also found that a firm principal added numerous phone numbers to the Allow List; the numbers came from leads that the firm had purchased. In addition, FINRA determined that the firm maintained that it thought the leads consisted solely of business phone numbers that are not subject to certain do-not-call restrictions. Moreover, FINRA found that the firm placed calls to phone numbers that it had added to the Allow List; a substantial percentage were personal phone numbers that were in the DNC Registry when the firm initiated telephone solicitations to them. (FINRA Case #2010021106701).