Merrill Lynch Broker Alleged To Have Stolen $3.6 Million
Christopher Lee Hibbard (also known as Chris Hibbard) of Louisville Kentucky a stockbroker formerly registered with Merrill Lynch Pierce Fenner Smith Incorporated is the subject of a customer initiated investment related complaint which has been resolved on October 24, 2019 for $175,000.00 in damages based upon accusations that (1) the customer was poorly advised (2) transactions were unsuitable given the customer’s investment profile (3) false statements were made about investments (4) the customer’s account had been churned by the stockbroker and (5) the customer’s funds were converted between July 1, 2010 and January 1, 2018.
Financial Industry Regulatory Authority (FINRA) Public Disclosure indicates that Hibbard is the subject of nine more customer initiated investment related disputes pertaining to allegations of his bad business practices during the period in which he was employed by securities broker dealers including Merrill Lynch. Specifically, on April 16, 2018, a customer filed an investment related complaint pertaining to Hibbard’s conduct in which the customer requested unspecified damages supported by allegations that when Hibbard was employed by Merrill Lynch, fraudulent actions were taken with the customer’s assets which led the customer to suffer unwarranted losses.
Hibbard is additionally referenced in a customer initiated investment related complaint on October 24, 2018 where the customer sought unspecified damages founded on accusations that the customer’s cash management account funds had been misappropriated or stolen when Hibbard was employed by Merrill Lynch. Also, a customer initiated investment related complaint pertaining to Hibbard’s conduct has been settled for $3,600,000.00 in damages on June 6, 2019 supported by allegations that when Hibbard was employed by Merrill Lynch, misleading statements were made by the stockbroker pertaining to the risks and drawbacks of investments, the customer’s investment instructions were not followed by the stockbroker, investment recommendations and variable annuities transactions failed to be suitable or authorized by the customer, and a theft had been committed.
FINRA Public Disclosure also reveals that Hibbard has been barred from associating with any FINRA member in any capacity based upon allegations that the stockbroker neglected to respond to FINRA’s request for information about his activities. FINRA Case No. 2018057148601 (May 10, 2018). Also, Hibbard is the subject of an investigation initiated by the United States Attorney’s Office on April 2, 2018 into accusations that Hibbard was stole from his customers
Hibbard was discharged by Merrill Lynch on January 8, 2018 based upon allegations of the stockbroker stealing from customers and effecting unauthorized transactions.