FINRA barred former HD Vest Investment Services brokers Jerry Davis Raines and Donna Lynn Barnard for failing to cooperate with staff investigating sales of promissory notes related to the Woodbridge Group of Companies and its related $1.2 billion Ponzi scheme.
FINRA's decision to bar Jerry Davis Raines (CRD #4578689) follows the filing of 15 customer disputes alleging misrepresentation of the Woodbridge Mortgage Investment Fund and failure to conduct reasonable due diligence on this and related unregistered securities.
One customer, meanwhile, characterized Raines' role as far more sinister than a simple failure to conduct due diligence: "Claimants alleged the representative agreed to join and participate in a civil conspiracy related to the Woodbridge investments and committed overt acts in furtherance of the conspiracy that substantially and successfully 'propped up' Woodbridge's fraudulent scheme."
Total alleged damages in the 15 Raines disputes, all filed in 2018, exceed $4 million.
As for Donna Lynn Barnard aka Donna Lynn Brooks aka Donna Lynn Stargell (CRD #5653949), the 14 pending customer disputes, all filed in 2018, similarly allege unsuitable recommendations, misrepresentation, and due diligence failures related the Woodbridge funds; for instance, one complaint further stated that the Woodbridge Mortgage Fund sold by Barnard was unauthorized by HD Vest.
Total alleged damages in the 14 Barnard disputes similarly exceed $4 million ($4.65m).
Publicized thanks to a December 2017 complaint from the SEC, the Woodbridge Ponzi scheme allegedly supervised by Woodbridge Group of Companies Robert H Shapiro of Sherman Oaks, California and Aspen, Colorado targeted 8,400 investors—many of them seniors who used their retirement savings to finance their investments—and defrauded them out of at least $1.2 billion.
As recently as August 2018, the SEC charged five additional salespersons—Barry and Ferne Kornfield, Lynette Robbins, Andrew Costa, and Albert Klager—with selling $243 million to customers, generating at least $6 million in commissions, while falsely representing to their clients that the Woodbridge investment was "safe and secure."
If you have with former HD Vest Investment Services brokers Jerry Davis Raines or Donna Lynn Barnard (Donna Brooks / Donna Stargell) or with any representative or financial adviser who sold you unregistered Woodbridge Group of Companies products or notes, such as the Woodbridge Mortgage Fund 1 or 2, and the associated misrepresentation, omissions, or unsuitable recommendation to invest in this $1.2 billion Ponzi scheme has resulted in losses to your portfolio, please call The Law Offices of Jonathan W. Evans & Associates at (800) 699-1881 for an investigation and consultation.