May 12, 2021
On March 16, 2021, the Financial Industry Regulatory Authority (FINRA) Department of Enforcement approved a Letter of Acceptance, Waiver and Consent (AWC) submitted by Tonya Smoake, a general securities representative formerly associated with Pursche Kaplan Sterling Investments in New York City from March 2017 to May 2019. She was most recently associated with Bhargava Capital in Franklin Lakes, New Jersey from May 2019 to September 2020.
According to the AWC, Smoake allegedly participated in approximately $1.6 million in a registered investment advisor (RIA) and its holding company without providing Pursche prior written notice. Smoake was the chief operations officer of the RIA at the time of these offerings and facilitated the investments by gathering signed documents from investors, answering investor questions, and coordinating investor payments. FINRA also asserts that Smoake falsely stated on the firm’s annual compliance questionnaire that she was not involved in any private securities transactions.
Although none of the customers were associated with Pursche and Smoake did not receive commissions, Smoake violated FINRA Rules 3280 and 2010. By signing the AWC, Smoake consented to a 12-month suspension from associating with any FINRA member firm in all capacities and a $5,000 fine.
Talk to an Experienced Attorney Today
Call and speak to one of our attorneys* for a no-cost consultation to discuss your situation, answer your questions, and help you determine the next steps. This call usually takes about 15 minutes, but we are happy to talk to you as long as you would like!
Quick Review of Your Paperwork
If we think you might have a case, we will need to review a few basic documents. If we determine you have a case, then you will have the option to hire us as your attorneys to pursue it.
Signed Attorney/Client Agreement
If you decide to hire us to pursue your case, we will have you sign an attorney-client agreement so we can begin the process of trying to recover your losses.*
*In the vast majority of cases, our agreement is contingent – meaning you won’t owe us any money unless we recover money for you.