Advisor Mark Frankel of Partnervest in Southern California Charged with Fraud

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The SEC charged Partnervest Advisory Services (Santa Barbara) and MJF Advisors (Encino, CA) representative Marc Jay Frankel with defrauding clients by stealing and misappropriating their assets for his personal use. The complaint, with the main charge of "Fraud by an Investment Adviser," indicates that some of Frankel's clients were Major League Baseball (MLB) players.

According to the SEC's civil complaint filed in the United States District Court for the Central District of California, which comprises the Los Angeles area where Frankel was registered, Marc Frankel (IAPD #2671700) engaged in a scheme to defraud his clients by targeting customer accounts and then stealing from them by making almost 250 money transfers from the customers' accounts to a credit card he controlled, using the misappropriated funds to pay for personal expenses, including tuition payments for Frankel's children, jewelry, and even Lakers tickets.

When pressed in 2020 by the MLB client's sports management agency about irregularities (alleged losses due to unauthorized transfers) in the account, Frankel purportedly responded with false statements, such as denying any impropriety, going so far as to attempt to blame the client's personal assistant for the unauthorized money transfers.

The complaint alleges that Frankel misappropriated approximately $745,000 from customers during the course of the fraud scheme. Encino-based MJF Advisors Corp's tax registration, meanwhile, was suspended as of 2022.

Although the present allegations produced a complaint in federal court, this isn't the first accusation of wrongdoing or breach of fiduciary duty for Frankel; FINRA suspended Frankel in 2013 for failing to abide by the terms of an arbitration award while associated with Wells Fargo Advisors in Encino.

If you invested with California investment adviser Marc Jay Frankel or with any broker or registered representative who stole or misappropriated money from your brokerage account, or who engaged in another fraudulent scheme that has proven harmful to your investments or interests, please call an experienced FINRA arbitration attorney at The Law Offices of Jonathan W. Evans & Associates at (800) 699-1881 for an investigation and consultation.