Former Signator Investors, Inc. Broker, Dee Dee Brooks, Barred From Associating With Any FINRA Brokerage Firm
Dee Dee Brooks (CRD # 2559223) was a Financial Advisor at Signator Investors in Huntington Beach, California. Dee Dee Brooks has been in the securities industry since 1995 and previously worked at SCF Securities, Inc. and Lincoln Financial Securities.
According to publicly available records released by the Financial Industry Regulatory Authority (FINRA), effective June 9, 2020, Dee Dee Brooks was barred from associating with any FINRA member brokerage firm. Effectively, this means that Dee Dee Brooks is unable to work as a registered Financial Advisor. It is alleged Dee Dee Brooks engaged in private securities transactions, which are prohibited under FINRA rules. According to the FINRA Sanction:
“Brooks consented to the sanction and to the entry of findings that she engaged in private securities transactions without providing prior notice to or obtaining approval from her member. The findings stated that Brooks solicited investors to purchase more than $1.77 million in securities in a purported real estate investment fund and in a company representing itself as a structured cash flow investment company. Brooks, through an entity that she worked with as an outside business, solicited investors, over half of whom where customers of her firm, to invest $906,497 in the fund’s promissory notes. Later, the fund filed a voluntary Chapter 11 bankruptcy petition. The U.S. District Court for the Southern District of Florida issued final judgments against, among others, the fund and its former owner. Those judgments required the fund and its owner to, among other things, disgorge their ill-gotten gains and pay a civil penalty. In addition, Brooks sold $866,895 in company purchase agreements to investors, most of whom were firm customers. Later, the investment company ceased business, owing nearly $300 million in unpaid investor payments. In a subsequent indictment, the U.S. charged the investment company and its owner with conspiracy to engage in mail and wire fraud related to the investment company’s operations.”
For a copy of the FINRA Sanction, click https://www.finra.org/sites/default/files/fda_documents/2018058983601%20Dee%20Dee%20Brooks%20CRD%202559233%20AWC%20va.pdf
The unregistered securities were promissory notes issued by Woodbridge Wealth, a documented ponzi scheme perpetrated by Robert Shapiro and facilitated by advisors all around the country.
Often times, Financial Advisors who participate in unapproved private securities transactions are said to be “selling away.” FINRA strictly prohibits financial advisors from “selling away” or selling securities and investments to clients that are not offered by the brokerage firm with which they are employed. For example, it is illegal and a violation of industry rules for a financial advisor to recommend or even suggest that a client invest in the financial advisor’s own business or a business operated by his or her friends or family. It is not necessary that the financial advisor earn any compensation for recommending an outside investment.
The purpose behind this prohibition is to ensure that a financial advisor only offers to sell securities that have been vetted by his or her employer brokerage firm through a rigorous due diligence process. Most brokerage firms have an approved list of investments, products, and research that can be provided or made available to clients. Any deviation by the financial advisor from the approved product list may constitute selling away.
In addition to the foregoing, Dee Dee Brooks was the subject of customer complaint arising out of this same alleged misconduct. In July 2018, a customer alleged “that the representative recommended that the complainant invest her IRA monies in a fraudulent Ponzi Scheme.” The matter was settled for $75,000.
Shortly before this complaint was filed, Dee Dee Brooks was terminated by Signator Investors for “her involvement in the sale of unregistered securities.”
For a copy of Dee Dee Brooks CRD, click https://brokercheck.finra.org/individual/summary/2559233#disclosuresSection
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