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Ex-LPL Rep Barred After Firing Over Unauthorized Trading Allegations

By Alex Padalka March 27, 2018

Watchdog Finra has barred a former LPL Financial advisor for failing to appear to testify in connection with an investigation into unauthorized trading allegations, according to a letter of acceptance, waiver and consent from the industry’s self-regulator.

Sanders Spangler, who joined the securities industry in 2000, was registered with LPL between October 2005 and February 2017, when the firm discharged him over allegations of violating firm policy by “exercising discretionary power in customer accounts,” according to his BrokerCheck profile.

In February 2018, Finra asked Spangler to show up for on-the-record testimony connected to the inquiry into possible unauthorized trading in five client accounts, and Spangler refused to appear, according to the letter of consent. His BrokerCheck record includes four settled customer disputes, starting from March 2016, and one still pending from October 2017 that alleges over-concentration in energy stocks, statement alterations and account liquidation without the customer’s knowledge.

Separately, Finra has barred a former advisor with Fortune Financial Services, Inc. for failing to hand over documents in connection with an arrest over fraud charges, according to a letter of acceptance, waiver and consent from the industry’s self-regulator.

Michael Giokas told Finra though his counsel that he would not provide documents requested by the regulator in connection with a Form U5 filed by Fortune Financial in October 2017, which said he had been charged with one count of felony fraud earlier that month, according to the letter of consent. Giokas provided Finra only with a partial response at first and, in a call with Finra staff in March 2018, told them via his counsel that he would not provide additional documents, the regulator says.

Finra

Giokas had been in the industry since 1985 and with Fortune Financial since February 2013, according to Finra. Since terminating his registration with Fortune Financial in October 2017, he has not registered with another Finra member firm, the regulator says.

Giokas had been registered with seven different firms during his three decades in financial services and had eight disclosure records, starting with a 1991 employment separation after allegations of violation of firm policy at FSC Securities on insurance-related bank accounts, according to his BrokerCheck profile.

Finra doesn’t provide any additional information about the nature of the fraud that led to his termination from Fortune Financial.

Note: This article has been edited to reflect that Michael Giokas worked at Fortune Financial. The original article incorrectly cited Focus Financial as Giokas' previous place of work. Michael Giokas he has never been associated with Focus, or any of the firms in the Focus partnership.