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Azmi Patrick Sharif, of Elmhurst, Illinois, a stockbroker registered with LPL Financial LLC, has been fined $5,000.00 and suspended for nine months from associating with any Financial Industry Regulatory Authority (FINRA) member in any capacity because Sharif took part in private securities transactions. Letter of Acceptance, Waiver, and Consent No. 2022076175702 (June 26, 2024).

On January 19, 2023, LPL Financial LLC reported that Sharif was terminated for not properly disclosing his involvement with a company, including creating an LLC for investment purposes and getting involved in customers’ private investments in the company without approval. Sharif was an employee and founding investor in a crypto asset mining company. On February 27, 2022, he and his business partner conducted a call with four LPL customers to discuss potential investments in the company.

According to the regulator, Sharif answered questions and explained potential returns, minimum investment amounts, fundraising goals, and the business model during the call. By April 2022, the customers collectively invested approximately $900,000.00 in SAFEs (simple agreements for future equity) for purchasing crypto asset mining equipment. Sharif did not inform LPL about these securities transactions. When the company changed its business model, it led to customer complaints to LPL.

FINRA determined that Sharif violated Rules 2010 and 3280.

FINRA Public Disclosure shows that on August 22, 2022, a customer initiated investment related complaint involving Sharif’s conduct was settled for $500,000.00 in damages based upon allegations that Sharif made misrepresentations of material facts and made the unsuitable investment recommendation of private placements during the period that Sharif was associated with LPL Financial LLC.

Sharif was associated with LPL Financial LLC in Elmhurst, Illinois from July 19, 2018, to January 19, 2023. He has been associated with KCD Financial Inc. in Oakbrook Terrace, Illinois since September 29, 2023, and Fourstar Wealth Advisors LLC in Oakbrook Terrace, Illinois since February 17, 2023.