FINRA barred former Financial Network Investment Corp. investment products/variable contracts representative Joseph Thomas Pappalardo for making fraudulent and misleading misrepresentations to a California customer, ultimately resulting in the customer losing $100,000 after being convinced to invest in a fake company. The findings state Pappalardo subsequently converted the $100,000 in customer funds for personal use.
The investigation states that Pappalardo participated in an outside business activity—a real estate company he founded in 2003 called Coast-2-Coast Properties—but told his employing firm in 2008 that Coast-2-Coast was no longer in business and that he was no longer involved in any outside business activities. Instead, Coast-2-Coast was alive and well and Pappalardo in fact participated in this and several other undisclosed business activities, including United First Financial, Energetic Ministries, Plethuna Investments, Triumphant Ministries and CLA-USA. Consequently, Pappalardo falsified Financial Network's compliance questionnaires.
FINRA found that Pappalardo solicited firm customers to invest in these outside businesses, making false and misleading statements of material fact to induce one notable $100,000 solicited investment in the Coast-2-Coast affiliate Prosperity Financial Estate Planning and Insurance Services, which the investigation states, did not receive the money.
Instead, according to investigators, Pappalardo pocketed the $100k, converting the funds for his personal use.
In order to solicit the funds, Pappalardo allegedly promised shares amounting to a 10% ownership stake in the fake Prosperity Financial business in exchange for $100,000, which Pappalardo instructed his customer to wire from California to Pappalardo's office in Oklahoma.
Financial Network Investment Corp is now known as Cetera Advisor Networks LLC and, when Pappalardo first joined, was known as Pension Planners Securities.
If you have invested with Joseph Thomas Pappalardo, or with any broker, financial adviser or firm whose false representations, omissions of material fact or outright fabrications, lies or fraud concerning an undisclosed outside/third party business activity has proven harmful to your investments or interests, please call The Law Offices of Jonathan W. Evans & Associates at (800) 699-1881 for investigation and consultation.