The law firm of Oakes & Fosher is presently investigating the alleged misconduct of former securities broker Laurence Torres. According to his publicly available FINRA BrokerCheck report, Laurence Torres has been the subject of multiple customer disputes.
Laurence Torres was a New York-based securities broker. He worked in the securities industry for fifteen years. During his career, he was registered with nine different securities firms. He is no longer working as a registered securities broker in any fashion.
- Mason Hill & Co. (2000)
- Valley Forge Securities (2000-2001)
- Cantone Research (2001-2002)
- Joseph Stevens & Company (2002-2007)
- VFinance Investments (2007-2009)
- J.P. Turner & Company (2009)
- Brookstone Securities (2009-2012)
- Alexander Capital (2012-2014)
- First Standard Financial Company (2014-2016)
- In October 2015, a customer alleged that Laurence Torres failed to follow instructions and failed to adequately explain the use of margin investments. This case was settled for $20,000 in damages.
- In November 2015, a customer alleged that Laurence Torres recommended unsuitable investments, breached his fiduciary duty, engaged in common law fraud, and breached contract. This case was settled for $95,000 in damages.
- In March 2016, a customer alleged that Laurence Torres recommended unsuitable investments, churned their account, and breached his fiduciary duty. This case went to arbitration where the customer was awarded $50,000 in damages.
- Also in March 2016, a customer alleged that Laurence Torres churned their account, recommended unsuitable investments, breached his fiduciary duty, and committed fraud. This case was settled for $50,000 in damages.
- In April 2017, a customer alleged that Laurence Torres over-concentrated their account in unsuitable and highly speculative securities and excessively traded their account on margin. This case is currently pending. The customer is seeking $232,451 in damages.
- In September 2017, Laurence Torres was officially sanctioned by the United States Securities and Exchange Commission. The findings in this matter state that Torres violated anti-fraud provisions of the federal securities laws by recommending a high-cost pattern of frequent trading that he had no reasonable basis to believe would be suitable to eight customers. Due to these alleged actions, he was barred by the SEC from acting as a securities broker in any fashion. He was fined $160,000 and forced to pay $225,359 in disgorgement.
- In February 2018, a customer alleged that Torres used high-pressure sales techniques and made unsuitable investments on their behalf. This case is currently pending. The customer is seeking $692,102 in damages.
What Does This Mean?
Securities brokers are not allowed to pressure their customers one way or the other when it comes to recommending investments. They are supposed to provide their opinions; however, pressuring their customers to invest in something they are not financially suited for can cause investors to incur significant financial losses. This is because of how the power dynamic between the broker and the investor works. Investors expect that their brokers have the skills and investment knowledge that they themselves lack. Because of this, any use of high-pressure sales techniques could sway investors to believe that whatever the investor is claiming must be the correct choice.
Oakes & Fosher Can Help
Many investors are unaware of the legal recourse available to them after losing money due to securities broker fraud and/or negligence. The truth is that investors who have lost money in this fashion may actually be entitled to damages.
Oakes & Fosher dedicates its entire legal practice to helping investors across the nation. If you, or someone you know, have lost money investing with Laurence Torres, please contact Oakes & Fosher for a free and private consultation. We work on a contingency basis, which means there are no fees charged unless we collect for you.