Richard Anthony McCollam, of Lafayette, California, a stockbroker formerly registered with National Planning Corporation, has been fined $10,000.00 and suspended from associating with any Financial Industry Regulatory Authority (FINRA) member in any capacity pursuant to a FINRA Office of Hearing Officers’ Hearing Panel Decision containing findings that he failed to disclose customer complaints as required by FINRA. Department of Enforcement v. Richard A. McCollam, No. 2012035284301 (May 17, 2017).

According to the Decision, McCollam failed to fulfill his obligation to report, via Form U4, seven customer initiated investment related complaints and two customer initiated investment related arbitration claims. The customers, all of whom were at one point employed at AT&T, brought claims based upon allegations that McCollam, while associated with Royal Alliance, solicited them to transfer their employer plans and individual retirement accounts into real estate investment trusts and expensive variable annuity contracts. The Decision revealed that the funds used by customers to purchase McCollam’s recommended investments had comprised a significant amount of the funds customers accumulated for their retirements. Apparently, customers collectively claimed to have incurred at least $2,400,000.00 in losses in connection with the investments purchased by them pursuant to unsuitable recommendations made by McCollam.

McCollam was purportedly cognizant of his obligation to make disclosures of customer complaints to FINRA, and even acknowledged that he knew of the customer complaints at the time of his omissions. The Decision stated that McCollam claimed that an entity which he intended on associating with, Ramcon, was to blame for his lack of disclosures. FINRA ultimately found that McCollam intentionally failed to disclose customer disputes to FINRA; conduct violative of FINRA Rules 2010 and 1122.

Financial Industry Regulatory Authority (FINRA) Public Disclosure reveals that McCollam has been identified in twenty-five customer initiated investment related disputes regarding allegations of his misconduct while associated with Royal Alliance Associates and SII Investments. Particularly, on July 14, 2010, a customer initiated investment related arbitration claim involving McCollam’s conduct was settled for $32,500.00 in damages based upon allegations that he breached his contractual duties, made omissions and misrepresentations to the customers, negligently managed customers’ investment portfolios, and breached his fiduciary duties in reference to the customers’ real estate security and variable annuity transactions.

Subsequently, on September 12, 2014, a customer initiated investment related arbitration claim regarding McCollam’s activities was resolved for $175,000.00 in damages based upon allegations that he did not appropriately supervise the activities of another registered representative who made unsuitable investment recommendations to the customer. Moreover, on November 11, 2016, a customer was awarded $91,907.00 in damages according to an investment related arbitration claim involving McCollam’s conduct, based upon allegations of unsuitability pertaining to the customer’s real estate investment trust and annuity purchases.

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