FINRA Securities Fraud and Misrepresentation Attorney, Russell L. Forkey, Esq.
Penena Karpel McRoberts (CRD #1909901, Registered Representative, Austin, Texas, formerly licensed with LPL Financial Corporation and Next Financial Group, Inc.) submitted a Letter of Acceptance, Waiver and Consent in which she was fined $20,000, which includes the disgorgement of commissions received of $9,600, and suspended from association with any FINRA member in any capacity for one year. The fine must be paid either immediately upon McRoberts’ reassociation with a FINRA member firm following her suspension, or prior to the filing of any application or request for relief from any statutory disqualification, whichever is earlier. Without admitting or denying the findings, McRoberts consented to the described sanctions and to the entry of findings that she effected private securities transactions without requesting and receiving her member firms’ permission. The findings stated that McRoberts sold $142,128 in promissory notes secured by pooled life settlements. The findings also stated that prior to engaging in these transactions, while associated with one of the firms, McRoberts had signed an Acknowledgment of Receipt and Review of Compliance Procedure Manual which stated that no private securities (or other investment or insurance) transaction may in any way be participated in by a representative unless the compliance director approves it in advance. The findings also included that despite McRoberts’ acknowledgment of the firm’s procedures, she failed to give written notice of her intention to participate in the sale of the securities to, and failed to obtain written approval from, her firm prior to the transactions. FINRA found that McRoberts effected private securities transactions while registered with another member firm and also failed to give written notice of her intention to participate in the sale of the securities, and failed to obtain her firm’s written approval prior to the transaction. FINRA also found that McRoberts received $9,600 in commissions from the transactions. In addition, FINRA determined that the investments McRoberts sold were not suitable for her clients; McRoberts failed to conduct adequate due diligence and thus had no reasonable basis to determine whether the investments were suitable for her clients. The suspension is in effect from March 21, 2011, through March 20, 2012. (FINRA Case #2009017606101).
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