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Arbitration Claims Pile Up For Securities America

Broker/dealer Securities America is finding itself entrenched in arbitration claims filed by disgruntled investors over soured private-placement deals involving the now-bankrupt Medical Capital Holdings.

As reported Jan. 9 by Investment News, the broker/dealer could face 150 or more arbitration claims over the next 12 to 18 months. The claims, filed with the Financial Industry Regulatory Authority (FINRA) involve $90 million in investor losses connected to Medical Cap Holdings.

Last month, Securities America’s legal woes began to mount in earnest when a FINRA arbitration panel awarded almost $1.2 million in damages and legal fees to an elderly client who had sued the broker/dealer and broker Randall Ray Talbott for misrepresentation over sales of Medical Capital private placements.

In July 2009, the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) filed fraud charges against Medical Capital in connection to sales of $77 million of private securities in the form of notes. In its complaint, the SEC accused the Tustin-based medical receivables firm of lying to backers as it allegedly raised and misappropriated millions of dollars of investors’ money while failing to disclose information about $1.2 billion in outstanding notes and $993 million in notes that had entered default.

In addition to arbitration claims from investors, Securities America faces legal issues from state securities regulators. Securities divisions in Massachusetts and Montana filed lawsuits again the broker/dealer last year over sales of Medical Capital private placements.

Over the years, many independent broker/dealers have pitched investments in Medical Capital notes to investors. Securities America, however, is by far the biggest seller of Med Cap private placements, with 400 brokers selling almost $700 million of the products.

Securities America has about 1,900 representatives and advisers. It is owned by Ameriprise Financial.

If you have a story to tell involving Securities America and/or investments in Medical Capital Holdings, please contact a member of the securities fraud team at Maddox, Hargett & Caruso.

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