A settlement release Thursday by the SEC stated that Robert Okin, Arthur Lewis, and Scott Eisler have agreed to bans and a combined $175,000 in fines to settle claims that are tied to illegal, unregistered sales of billions of shares worth of penny stocks on the behalf of a customer.
The settlement claims that Okin, a former Oppenheimer executive and Lewis, a branch manager in the firm’s Boca Raton, Fla., failed to supervise Scott Eisler, the broker, properly.
The two are accused of ignoring red flags as Eisler traded up to 2.5 billion penny stock shares in illegal and unregistered transactions. Mr. Lewis is accused of participating in some cases and in approving the sales, the Securities and Exchange Commission said. The sales generated some $12 million in proceeds and $588,400 in commissions for Oppenheimer, according to the settlement.
“In the face of red flags that their customer’s stock sales were not exempt from registration, Oppenheimer’s branch personnel allowed these unregistered transactions to occur,” said Andrew J. Ceresney, director of the SEC’s Division of Enforcement. “Okin, one of Oppenheimer’s senior-most executives, also failed to properly supervise by allowing these transactions to occur and failing to respond appropriately to the red flags suggesting violations of the federal securities laws.”
Okin has supposedly agreed to $125,000 as well as to be barred from working in the industry, in any supervisory capacity, for at least one year. Okin reportedly resigned from Oppenheimer in December. According to his FINRA BrokerCheck, he has not re-registered with another firm.
Lewis, currently a managing director with Aegis Capital Corp., has agreed to pay $50,000 and has been barred from working in the industry, in any supervisory capacity, for at least one year.
Eisler, now an adviser at Moors & Cabot Inc., has also agreed to pay $50,000 and is barred from engaging in any penny stock sales, or working in the securities industry for at least one year.
None of the three have admitted to the SEC’s allegations
When reporting the initial investigation on their BrokerCheck records, both Okin and Lewis allegedly denied any violation of securities laws.
The foregoing information, which is all publicly available, is being provided by The White Law Group. The White Law Group is a national securities arbitration, securities fraud, and investor protection law firm with offices in Chicago, Illinois and Vero Beach, Florida.
The White Law Group is a national securities arbitration, securities fraud, and investor protection law firm with offices in Chicago, Illinois and Vero Beach, Florida.
For more information on The White Law Group, visit www.whitesecuritieslaw.com.
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