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The Wolper Law Firm Has Filed Three Separate Arbitration Claims Against Kalos Capital Based Upon the Sale Of GPB Capital Holdings By Its Former Financial Advisor, Darren Kubiak

Darren Kubiak (CRD # 1239086) is a former Financial Advisor at Kalos Capital, Inc. in Lawrenceville, GA.  Darren Kubiak has been in the securities industry since 1984 and previously worked at Questar Capital, Signator Investors, Inc., Washington Square Securities, Inc., Hornor, Townsend & Kent and First Investors Corporation.

The Wolper Law Firm has been retained by multiple former clients of Darren Kubiak who were sold private placement interests in GPB Capital Holdings, non-traded real estate investment trusts (“Non-Traded REITs”), business development companies (“BDCs”) and universal life insurance products.  The Wolper Law Firm has filed independent arbitration claims on behalf of these clients, seeking a full recovery of the investment losses and rescission of the illiquid securities they own as a result of the unlawful recommendations made by Darren Kubiak.  It some instances, Darren Kubiak recommended that the clients borrow against the cash value of insurance policies to fund these unsuitable investments, enhancing the damages caused to the client.  

As previously reported on this blog, the Wolper Law Firm is currently representing investors across the country in the recovery of their investment losses in GPB Capital Holdings due to the inappropriate investment advice of their Financial Advisors and brokerage firms.  Due to the volume of mounting litigation, it is imperative that investors act now or they may find themselves without a source of recovery.  Many of the brokerage firms that sold GPB have finite resources and insurance coverage and when those funds are gone so too is the opportunity for recovery. 

GPB Has reportedly raised $1.8 billion from investors across the country through private placement investments in a number of individual limited partnerships, including: 

-GPB Automotive Portfolio, LP
-GPB Cold Storage, LP
-GPB Eurobond Finance PLC
-GPB Holdings II, LP
-GPB Holdings, III, LP
-GPB Holdings Qualified, LP
-GPB Holdings, LP
-GPB NYC Development
-GPB Scientific, LLC
-GPB Waste Management, LP formerly: GPB Waste Management Fund, LP.

Over the last several months, the GPB family of funds have precipitously declined, leaving investors with large losses.  Some of the GPB funds have reported declines of 40%-70%. 

Several disturbing revelations have recently surfaced.  In a lawsuit filed by a former GPB operating partner, it was alleged that GPB was operating a ponzi scheme.   Specifically, in July 2017, GPB Capital Holdings, LLC (“GPB”) initiated a litigation against Patrick Dibre, a former operating partner, in New York State Supreme Court, Nassau County, Index No. 606417/2017 (the, “Dibre Case”).  On March 19, 2018, Mr. Dibre filed counterclaims against GPB in the Dibre Case. Mr. Dibre’s allegations, which include allegations against GPB Capital Holdings, LLC’s controllers, David Gentile (“Gentile”) and Jeffrey Schneider (“Schneider”), alege the following:

Contrary to GPB’s stated purpose in bringing the instant action against Dibre, the true purpose of this action by GPB is to divert attention away from the fact that the losses occasioned by GPB were in fact caused by a very complicated and manipulative Ponzi scheme.

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Gentile also engaged his father’s accounting firm to perform monthly services that were either never performed or which were overbilled in the approximate amount of $100,000 per month.  The performance of those alleged services by a related party was not disclosed to investors at that time.

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Gentile and Schneider also expensed significant personal expenses such as luxury cars, vacations, and private jets to GPB or dealerships. One of those expenses totaled $550,000 for use of an airplane for the month of August 2017.

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Gentile and Schneider recorded the purchase price of the dealerships that they purchased from Dibre at several million dollars more than the combined actual purchase price, closing expenses, and working capital investment. They then directed those additional monies back to themselves, or entities in which they held in interest, as acquisition fees.

In addition, in July 2019, David Rosenberg, a chief executive of Prime Automotive Group, filed another lawsuit against GPB in Massachusetts Superior Court, alleging a “massive securities fraud” in which it used money from investors to prop up the performance of auto dealerships it owns, as well as to finance payments to other investors. 

Separate and apart from the lawsuits, there are pending governmental and regulatory investigations: 

  • In September 2018, the Massachusetts Secretary of the Commonwealth announced that it was launching an investigation into the 63 securities broker-dealer firms that sold partnerships controlled by GPB.
  • In December 2018 it was reported that the Securities and Exchange Commission as well as the Financial Industry Regulatory Authority, or FINRA, launched investigations into GPB.
  • On February 28, 2019, the FBI made an “unannounced visit” to GPB’s office in New York. Following the visit, a spokesperson for GPB announced that the firm was cooperating with the investigation.

More recently, in October 2019, a class action lawsuit was filed in the United States District Court for the Western District of Texas (the “Texas Action”).  In the Texas Action, the class plaintiffs allege the following:

  • “While deceiving investors into believing they were earning 8% annual return, Defendants attempted to mask the inevitable failure of the partnership by telling the Class that they would receive on a regular and continuous basis payments “fully covered from funds from operations” and from “healthy cash flows” in an amount of 8% annualized. Indeed, as late as 2019, Defendants continued to represent that distributions were being based upon “performance results.” This was all a lie. GPB played a game with the limited partners. Almost all (e., more than 95%) of the distributions made to limited partners from GPB and its affiliates were simply returns of the limited partners’ own capital. There was no 8% operational income, only losses.”
  • The complaint further alleges that GPB failed to register some of the larger funds in violation of the Securities and Exchange Act of 1934.

The Wolper Law Firm represents investors nationwide in securities litigation and arbitration on a contingency fee basis.  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.  We can be reached at 800.931.8452 or by email at mwolper@wolperlawfirm.com.

According to publicly available records released by the Financial Industry Regulatory Authority (FINRA), Darren Kubiak has four pending customer complaints disclosed on his CRD, alleging the following sales practice violations:

  • January 2019–Customer alleges “unsuitable investments.”  Alleged damages are $50,000 and the matter remains pending.  
  • September 2019–Customer alleges “Unsuitable recommendations, Negligence and breach of fiduciary duty, Negligent supervision, Breach of contract.”  The alleged damages are $500,000 and the matter remains pending.
  • July 2019 – Customer alleges “unsuitable investments; sales commenced in 2012 and continued for approximately 5 years.” Alleged damages are $495,368.50.
  • June 2019 – Customer alleges “Between 2014 and 2018, claimants invested about $170,000 in GPB Funds which they claim were unsuitable…” Alleged damages are $500,000.

For a copy of Darren Kubiak’s CRD, click https://brokercheck.finra.org/individual/summary/1239086#disclosuresSection.

In addition, on September 6, 2019, Darren Kubiak was sanctioned by FINRA, suspending him for three months and fining him $5,000 for recommending that clients leveraged exchange traded funds.  Specifically, the FINRA sanction states:

“Without admitting or denying the findings, Kubiak consented to the sanctions and to the entry of findings that he recommended the purchase of leveraged and inverse exchange traded funds (LIETFs) to customers without having a sufficient understanding of the risks and features associated with the LIETFs. The findings stated that Kubiak thereby failed to have a reasonable basis to make these recommendations. Kubiak recommended these customers purchase LIETFs, which the customers then held for an average of 722 days. These extended holding periods caused Kubiak’s customers to incur approximately $98,000 in losses. Kubiak failed to perform reasonable due diligence. Moreover, Kubiak did not understand that LIETFs are generally expected to lose value over time and that losses are compounded because of how the LIETFs’ valuations are reset each day.”

For a copy of the FINRA sanction, click https://www.finra.org/sites/default/files/fda_documents/2016048196801%20Kalos%20Capital%2C%20Inc.%20CRD%2044337%20Darren%20Michael%20Kubiak%20CRD%201239086%20%20AWC%20va%20%282019-1570407595491%29.pdf

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.  

The Wolper Law Firm represents investors nationwide in securities litigation and arbitration on a contingency fee basis.  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.  We can be reached at 800.931.8452 or by email at mwolper@wolperlawfirm.com.

 

Now is the time to talk to an investment loss recovery lawyer. We can help recover your investment loss. Free consultations, always.

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