FINRA barred former Oppenheimer & Co. Inc. broker Randy Jason Schneider for allegedly misappropriating checks and bonds from two elderly customers. It additionally ordered Schneider pay at least $282,000, plus interest, in restitution to the customers.
FINRA'S findings state that in 2011, Schneider received at least eight personal checks from an 86-year-old university professor with instructions to deposit the checks into the customer's brokerage account for eventual purchases of bonds.
Instead, Schneider either cashed or deposited the checks into his own personal bank account and failed to inform the customer or Oppenheimer of this. Financial records indicate that in depositing or cashing the checks in this manner, Schneider used the funds for his own personal benefit without permission, authorization or consent.
FINRA additionally discovered that on four additional occasions, Schneider deposited customer-owned bearer bonds into his own brokerage account, subsequently sold the bonds and used the proceeds—totaling $223,000—for his own personal use.
Records show Schneider wired at least $200,000 of the bond proceeds back to his own personal bank account, again failing to disclose these events to his 86-year-old customer.
In regards to the second customer—an 80-year-old man—Schneider similarly sold multiple bearer bonds and pocketed the proceeds for his own personal use without this second elderly customer's knowledge, consent or approval.
In all, FINRA discovered at least 15 separate deposits directly into Schneider-held accounts, including wire transfers between Schneider's brokerage and personal accounts that made it more difficult to trace the funds and bonds back to his customers.
Schneider additionally failed to provide testimony as requested by FINRA and although he appealed the Office of Hearing Officers (OHO)'s initial decision to the National Adjudicatory Council (NAC), the NAC dismissed Schneider's appeal in a default decision due to abandonment.
Schneider was officially charged with misuse of customer funds, conversion and fraud in violation of FINRA Rules and the Securities Exchange Act of 1934 and failure to appear for testimony and produce documents, resulting in a bar from the industry.
If you have invested with Randy Jason Schneider or with any broker who has misappropriated or converted funds, please call The Law Offices of Jonathan W. Evans & Associates at (800) 699-1881 for an investigation and consultation.