Regulator Sanctions Innovation Partners Stockbroker
Yanique Elaine Lawrence of Charlotte North Carolina a former Chief Executive Officer and President of Innovation Partners LLC agreed to sanctions imposed by the Maryland Securities Division which involve her not engaging in securities business in Maryland based on her being permanently barred by Financial Industry Regulatory Authority (FINRA) in all principal capacities and suspended for six months from associating with any FINRA member in any capacity. Case No. 20190204 (Dec. 10, 2019).
Lawrence was sanctioned according to an Office of Hearing Officers Decision and Order of Settlement containing findings that the stockbroker (1) failed to supervise Innovation Partners (2) allowed a person who FINRA expelled to associate with the securities broker dealer and (3) failed to be cooperative with FINRA personnel during the time that she was investigated by the regulator. Disciplinary Proceeding No. 2016050957901 (Aug. 26, 2019).
According to the Order, between October 28, 2016 and August 15, 2019, during the period in which Lawrence was Chief Executive Officer and President of Innovation Partners LLC, she enabled Patrick Emanuel Sutherland to engage in activities even though he was disqualified by FINRA and had not been associated with a securities broker dealer. FINRA stated that Lawrence’s conduct was violative of FINRA By-Laws and Rules 2010 and 8311.
The Order also stated that Lawrence neglected to create and implement an adequate supervision system with a view towards ensuring that disqualified and unregistered stockbrokers did not engage in securities transactions or other impermissible activities. Lawrence failed to notice the red flags which indicated that the disqualified stockbroker engaged in securities operations and business activities. FINRA determined that Lawrence’s conduct was violative of FINRA Rules 2010 and 3110.
Also, the Order stated that when Lawrence was under investigation by the regulator, she neglected to timely cooperate with its requests for her information and documentation. FINRA determined that Lawrence’s failure to comply constituted a violation of FINRA Rules 2010 and 8210.
Lawrence’s registration with Innovation Partners has been terminated as of September 23, 2019.