Carmel, Milazzo & DiChiara LLP (CMD) is investigating potential claims against Lawson Financial Corporation, Inc., an Arizona based company, and its CEO Robert Lawson for fraud related to municipal bonds.
FINRA has issued a formal complaint against Lawson Financial Corporation, Inc. (LFC), as well as Robert Lawson, the company’s CEO and President with self-dealing – furthermore the regulator has charged LFC with abuse and securities fraud given their role as co-trustees of a charitable remainder trust. In particular, LFC and Lawson were improperly using the trust funds to indirectly prop up the struggling offerings via transfers of millions of dollars from the charitable remainder trust account – the allegations also extend to Pamela Lawson, LFC’s Chief Operating Officer (COO).
The specific municipal bonds at issue in the cited complaint include a $10.5 million bond offering back in October 2014 for bonds relating to an Arizona charter school – this was underwritten by LFC and peddled to LFC customers. In addition, LFC had also been involved in secondary market bond sales to its clientele in 2015, involving earlier-issued municipal revenue bonds to the same charter school. Finally, the complaint details secondary market sales to LFC’s customers between early 2013 and July 2015, concerning two separate assisted living facilities in Alabama.
FINRA has alleged that Lawson and LFC were acutely aware of the financial difficulties faced by the municipal revenue bond conduit borrowers, i.e. the Arizona charter school and the assisted living centers, opting to mask the financial woes facing these groups to its customers. This was further compounded by allegations that Lawson and LFC carried out their securities fraud by transferring millions of dollars from a deceased customer’s charitable trust account to cover up any associated risks endemic in the municipal revenue bonds.
Securities fraud, also known as stock fraud and investment fraud, is a deceptive practice in the stock, bond or commodities markets that induces investors to make purchase or sale decisions on the basis of false information, frequently resulting in losses, in violation of securities laws.
Investors are protected against fraudulent securities activities by several different civil laws. First, the Securities Exchange Act of 1934 (15 U.S.C. § 78a et seq.) and Rule 10b-5 protect investors against deceptive and manipulative acts in the purchase or sale of securities. This sweeping legislation is the cornerstone of federal securities laws. Rule 10b-5 makes it unlawful to employ a device or scheme to defraud, to make any untrue statement of material fact or omit to state a material fact not misleading, or to engage in any practice that would operate as a fraud.
If you or someone you know lost money investing in or with Lawson Financial Corporation, Inc., you may be entitled to recover your investment losses through FINRA arbitration. CMD accepts cases on a contingency fee basis, which means we only get paid if you get paid. Your time to file a claim may be limited, so contact us today at (212) 658-0458 or firstname.lastname@example.org for a free and confidential case evaluation.