Were You A Victim of Fraud from Former Newbridge Securities Corporation Financial Advisor Brian Berger?
Posted on Saturday, January 6th, 2018 at 9:29 am
Erez Law is currently investigating former Newbridge Securities Corporation financial advisor Brian Berger (CRD# 3208127) regarding a fraudulent scheme that involved wire fraud and misappropriating elderly customers’ funds. Berger was registered with Newbridge Securities Corporation in Boca Raton, Florida from April to June 2015, with Metlife Securities Inc. in Fort Lauderdale, Florida from July 2014 to April 2015, and with Wells Fargo Advisors, LLC in Boca Raton, Florida from 2010 to 2014, when he was terminated regarding, “The registered representative did not follow company policy with respect to customer signatures on account documents.”
In September 2016, Berger pled guilty to felony wire fraud, and in November 2016 he pled guilty to three counts of wire fraud. It is reported that in August 2017, the Securities and Exchange Commission entered a criminal judgment against Berger. Berger was sentenced to 18 months in prison, followed by three years of supervised release, and was ordered to pay restitution in the amount of $372,643. According to the SEC plea, Berger admitted that between April 2013 and September 2015, he engaged in a scheme to defraud and used his position to either transfer money from client investment accounts to which he had access or convince clients to give him money to invest in non-existent businesses. It is also alleged that Berger admitted to the FBI that he utilized unauthorized transfers from client accounts to pay his personal credit card account and obtained money for personal use by taking cash advances from his credit card account. Berger also admitted to making unauthorized withdrawals from the accounts of two clients, and he admitted to taking through his fraud schemes a total of $372,643.
Additionally, in November 2015, Berger was suspended from FINRA after he failed to comply with an arbitration award or settlement agreement or to satisfactorily respond to a FINRA request to provide information concerning the status of compliance.
In July 2015, FINRA barred Berger after he consented to the sanction and to the entry of findings that he failed to provide the requested documents and information, and refused to appear and provide on-the-record testimony to FINRA, during an investigation into allegations that berger had misappropriated funds from elderly customers while registered with member firms. According to the Acceptance, Waiver & Consent (AWC), Berger misappropriated funds from elderly customers while registered with Wells Fargo Advisors LLC and MetLife Securities, Inc.
Berger has been the subject of three customer complaints between 2011 and 2015, according to his CRD report:
July 2015. “Client alleges payments against her brokerage accounts, for discover card accounts owned by the financial advisor, were unauthorized.” The customer sought $175,143.04 in damages and the case was settled for $186,474.44.
June 2015. “Client alleges payments against her brokerage accounts, for discover card accounts owned by the financial advisor, were unauthorized. (07/27/2010-06/30/2014).” The customer sought $186,013.40 in damages and the case was settled for $231,136.70.
April 2011. “Unsuitablility, misrepresentation 01/01/08-10/31/08.” The customer sought $30,000 in damages and the case was settled for $13,500.
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, Newbridge Securities Corporation may be liable for investment or other losses suffered by Berger’s customers.
Erez Law represents investors in the United States for claims against brokers and brokerage firms for wrongdoing. If and 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.