Were you the victim of former Cetera Advisor Networks LLC broker David Rockwell (CRD# 4236377)?
Rockwell was registered with Cetera Advisor Networks LLC in Fort Myers, Florida from 2015 to 2018 and with Cetera Advisor Networks LLC in Sewickley, Pennsylvania from June to August 2015, when he was terminated regarding, “representative’s registration was terminated after representative notified the firm that he had been charged with a felony.” Rockwell was registered with Suntrust Investment Services, Inc. in Fort Myers, Florida from 2012 to 2015 and previously with Fifth Third Securities, Inc. in Fort Myers, Florida from 2009 to 2012.
Rockwell was previously arrested twice prior to his employment at Cetera Advisors Networks.
In June 2021, Rockwell was sentenced to five years in federal prison for wire fraud and bank fraud after he pleaded guilty in January 2021. The court also entered a money judgment of $1,018,000, which is the proceeds of his wire and bank fraud, as part of his sentence. According to a statement from the Justice Department, Rockwell started his fraud and theft of clients’ funds in October 2017, when he began to defraud clients and misappropriated his clients’ funds for his own purpose.
According to the announcement, “Rockwell also defrauded a federally insured bank when he applied for two lines of credit, totaling $700,000, in the names of his clients, without their knowledge or permission. Rockwell forged the clients’ signatures on the loan applications and pledged the clients’ assets as collateral for the loans, all without their knowledge or authorization. Rockwell used the funds that he had obtained from the loans for his own use and benefit… Furthermore, Rockwell persuaded another client to invest in low-income housing in Florida. However, once the client transferred approximately $400,000 to fund the investment, Rockwell used the money to pay his personal credit cards and to purchase a home.”
In February 2020, FINRA barred Rockwell after he failed to respond to a FINRA request for information.
In June 2019, Rockwell was terminated from World Choice Securities, Inc. regarding, “While at a previous broker-dealer customer established and funded an LLC with $400k and then transferred same to an LLC established by Rockwell for the purpose of (a) real estate deal(s) allegedly never made. No specific dates were given but implied 2016 to 2018.”
In September 2018, Rockwell was charged with and pleaded guilty to aggravated stalking.
In July 2015, Rockwell’s registration was denied by the Florida Office of Financial Regulation, alleging “Making a material false statement on the application for registration.”
According to public records, a former client of Rockwell and Cetera Advisor Networks LLC filed a FINRA arbitration, alleging negligence, breath of fiduciary duty, and negligent supervision. The conserservative investor alleged that Rockwell diverted more than $400,000 from the customer’s IRA and annuity and moved it to another IRA, an Advanta IRA. It is alleged that Rockwell then invested all of that money to invest in a company that invested in low-income housing, which was put in the customer’s name, but controlled by Rockwell. It is alleged that Rockwell promised 7% annual returns. However, the lawsuit alleges that Rockwell instead wired all the money and diverted it for his personal use. The client has now lost the majority of his life savings. The lawsuit alleged that despite Rockwell’s history of lying, arrests, and financial troubles, Cetera Advisor Networks did not put him on heightened supervision.
Rockwell has been the subject of three customer complaints between 2019 and 2020, according to his CRD report:
September 2020. “Claimant alleges their registered representative obtained loans in their name that were secured by their brokerage accounts without authorization.” The customer sought $2 million in damages and the case was settled for $415,000
July 2019. “Clients allege Mr. Rockwell was involved in forgery and fraud regarding their accounts.” The customer is seeking $700,000 in damages and the case is currently pending.
June 2019. “Client alleges that Mr. Rockwell misappropriated money from his investment accounts to invest in a private security related to a company owned by Mr. Rockwell.” The customer sought $500,000 in damages and the case was settled for $215,000.
Pursuant to FINRA Rules, member firms are responsible for supervising a broker’s activities during the time the broker is registered with the firm. Therefore, Cetera may be liable for investment or other losses suffered by Rockwell’s customers.
Erez Law represents investors in the United States for claims against brokers and brokerage firms for wrongdoing. If you have experienced investment losses, please call us at 888-840-1571 or complete our contact form for a free consultation. Erez Law is a nationally recognized law firm representing individuals, trusts, corporations and institutions in claims against brokerage firms, banks and insurance companies on a contingency fee basis.