Regulator Sanctions Coastal Equities Stockbroker For Churning

Sam Aziz (also known as Sam Azizieh and as Sam Yehya) of Dublin Ohio a stockbroker formerly registered with Coastal Equities Inc. is the subject of a Ohio Division of Securities Order in which his stockbroker registration has been revoked based upon allegations that (1) Aziz effected trades that were not suitable for a customer (2) Aziz violated a fiduciary duty that he owed to a customer and (3) Aziz churned the customer’s investment account during the time that he was associated with Coastal Equities. Case No. 20-004 (Jan. 7, 2020).

This is not the first time that Aziz has been sanctioned by a securities regulator. He has been barred from associating with any Financial Industry Regulatory Authority (FINRA) member in any capacity founded on findings that he obstructed a FINRA investigation into accusations of his bad advice and unsuitable trading. Letter of Acceptance Waiver and Consent No. 2017052325701 (Mar. 27, 2019). According to the AWC, Aziz refused to testify about accusations of his possibly unsuitable investment recommendations and excessive trading. The stockbroker also failed to testify about allegations of his inappropriate margin use and his attempt at settling a customer’s complaint outside the auspices of Coastal Equities or David A. Noyes. FINRA determined that Aziz violated FINRA Rules 2010 and 8210 in this respect.

FINRA Public Disclosure reveals that Aziz has been identified in seven additional customer initiated investment related disputes containing allegations of his misconduct while employed by Coastal Equities. On August 30, 2018, a customer initiated investment related arbitration claim involving Aziz’s conduct was settled for $210,000.00 in damages based upon allegations that securities held in the customer’s account were not suitable for the customer and that trades were effected on an unauthorized and excessive basis by Aziz between 2015 and 2017. FINRA Arbitration No. 17-02287 (Aug. 30, 2018).

Aziz has been referenced in a customer initiated investment related complaint which was settled on June 6, 2019 for $775,000.00 in damages supported by allegations that excessive stock transactions had been executed in the Costal Equities customer’s account by Aziz. On October 21, 2019, another customer initiated investment related civil action pertaining to Aziz’s conduct was settled for $275,000.00 in damages supported by allegations of bad over-the-counter equities transactions in the customer’s account during the period in which Aziz was employed by Wells Fargo Advisors Financial Network. The claim alleges that the transactions were unsuitable and unauthorized.

Aziz is also the subject of a customer initiated investment related written complaint which was resolved for $550,000.00 in damages on March 3, 2020 based upon accusations of Aziz’s excessive trading of stocks at Coastal Equities. On March 3, 2020, a customer initiated investment related complaint in reference to Aziz’s conduct was resolved for $495,000.00 in damages based upon accusations that the customer’s assets were inappropriately concentrated in risky investments. The complaint alleges that trades were effected without the customer’s permission and that the customer’s investment portfolio had been churned by the stockbroker.

Aziz was discharged by David A. Noyes based on a Wells Notice alleging Aziz’s misconduct.