MORRISON REACHES SETTLEMENT WITH AGENT, FIRM CHARGED IN SECURITIES FRAUD CASE
Spokane Stockbroker Richard Westerman and broker-dealer firm Raymond James Financial Services ordered to pay fines, restitution for Unsuitable Recommendations and Churning Allegations
Montana State Auditor John Morrison has reached a settlement in the administrative action against former stockbroker Richard Westerman and broker-dealer firm Raymond James Financial Services. In the action filed by the Securities Department of the Auditor’s Office allegations included Westerman committed securities fraud when he churned an IRA owned by a Missoula resident and alleged the company failed to reasonably supervise Westerman. The Notice of Proposed Agency Disciplinary Action and Opportunity for Hearing, filed May 31, also alleged Westerman conducted the fraudulent trading in the IRA account without the account owner’s authorization or knowledge.
Raymond James Financial Services agreed to and paid a $10,000 fine to the State of Montana and has contributed $6,296.76 to the Investor Protection Trust for the benefit of Montana investors. Westerman agreed to pay the Missoula victims $15,000 in restitution and will not seek registration as a securities salesperson or an investment advisor representative or an investment advisor in Montana. Westerman currently lives in Washington.
The Investor Protection Trust provides independent, objective information needed by consumers to make informed investment decisions. Founded in 1993 as part of a multi-state settlement to resolve charges of misconduct, IPT serves as an independent source of non-commercial investor education materials. IPT operates programs under its own auspices and uses grants to underwrite important initiatives carried out by other organizations. The IPT recently provided the Montana State Auditor’s Office with a grant to develop an investor education documentary entitled “Fraud Under the Big Sky.” To learn to protect yourself from securities fraud, you can order a copy of this DVD by calling (800) 332-6148.