The Wolper Law Firm is currently investigating claims against Joel Flaningan, a former Financial Advisor at NY Life Securities in Fort Wayne, Indiana. Joel Flaningan has been in the securities industry since the 2010.
According to publicly available records released by the Financial Industry Regulatory Authority (FINRA), on May 10, 2018, Joel Flaningan was discharged by NY Life Securities for allegedly selling unregistered securities issued by the fraudulent Woodbridge Mortgage Investment Fund. Specifically, it is alleged:
“[Joel Flaningan] was involved in the solicitation of New York Life (“NYL”) clients to invest in an unregistered entity named Woodbridge Mortgage Investment Fund (“Woodbridge”),which has filed for bankruptcy protection and is the subject of an action filed by the SEC. Mr. Flaningan failed to disclose any involvement with Woodbridge to NYL. Neither Woodbridge nor any related investment or entities were ever associated directly or indirectly with NYL or its affiliates in any way.”
A customer complaint was filed against Joel Flaningan just one month earlier—April 2018—alleging improper sales of the unregistered Woodbridge securities.
For years, the Woodbridge Group of Companies, operated a ponzi scheme in which it sold (through outside financial professionals) promissory notes allegedly backed by mortgages. The investment program turned out to be a $1.2 billion ponzi scheme and Woodbridge’s principal, Robert Shapiro is currently under criminal indictment.
According to the SEC’s complaint filed against Woodbridge, the Woodbridge business model was to borrow money from investors in exchange for promissory notes, maturing usually in 12 or 18 months. The notes had an annual interest rate of 5% to 8% payable monthly. The investors’ money was supposed to be issued to lenders in the form of securitized mortgages, but rarely was, according to the SEC. Alan New is allegedly one of the outside financial professionals that sold the fraudulent notes to unsuspecting customers.
In December 2017, Woodbridge declared bankruptcy.
Financial advisors have a legal and regulatory obligation to recommend only suitable investments that are appropriate for their clients’ needs and objectives. Their employing brokerage firm has a legal and regulatory obligation to supervise the Financial Advisors’ sales practices and dealings with clients. To the extent any of these duties are breached, the customer may be entitled to a recovery of his or her investment losses.
If you or someone you know was a customer of Joel Flaningan and you experienced investment losses, please contact the Wolper Law Firm at 800.931.8452 or by email at firstname.lastname@example.org to discuss your specific situation and the legal options available. The Wolper Law Firm represents investors nationwide in securities litigation and arbitration.
Matt Wolper, the Managing Principal of the Wolper Law Firm, is a trial lawyer who has handled hundreds of securities cases during his career involving a wide range of products, strategies and securities. Prior to representing investors, he was a partner with a national law firm, where he represented some of the largest banks and brokerage firms in the world in securities matters. Simply put, he knows how the other side evaluates cases, which gives you a competitive advantage.