Matthew A. Bell, of San Antonio Texas, a stockbroker formerly registered with Securities America, Inc., has been named in a customer initiated investment related arbitration claim on December 8, 2015, in which the customer requested $5,000.00 in damages based upon allegation that Bell breached his fiduciary duty to the customer and made investment recommendations which were unsuitable.

FINRA Public Disclosure reveals that Bell has been subject to an unprecedented forty-seven customer initiated investment related arbitration claims.

Bell is also presently subject to a pending customer initiated investment related arbitration claim on October 7, 2015, in which the customer is requesting $75,000.00 in damages based upon allegations that Bell made misrepresentations and investment recommendations that were unsuitable.

Bell has previously settled a number of customer arbitration actions. Particularly, from April 27, 2015, through July 27, 2015, Bell settled three customer initiated investment related arbitration claims for $48,634.70 in damages based upon allegations against Bell of breach of contract and fraud. One customer even alleged that Bell’s firm failed to supervise him.

On February 3, 2015, Bell settled a customer initiated investment related arbitration claim for $112,000.00 in damages based upon allegations against Bell of making misrepresentations to the customer and making unsuitable investment recommendations. On January 26, 2015, Bell settled another customer initiated investment related arbitration claim based upon allegations that Bell engaged in deceptive trade practices, breach of contract, and fraud in connection with the sale of illiquid real estate investment trusts as well as penny stocks.

From July 21, 2014, through September 8, 2014, Bell resolved three more customer initiated investment related arbitration claims based upon allegations that Bell made unsuitable investment recommendations regarding private placement investments, exchange traded funds, and penny stocks. The customers additionally alleged that Bell breached his fiduciary duty, made omissions and misrepresentations of facts concerning investments, effected unauthorized trades, breached his contractual duties, and committed fraud.

FINRA Public Disclosure reveals that on June 20, 2013, Bell was terminated from WFG Investments Inc. based upon allegations that Bell attempted to settle a customer dispute outside the auspices of the firm’s compliance division. On October 1, 2013, Bell was terminated from Securities America, Inc., based upon allegations that he committed violations of his firm’s procedures pertaining to private securities transactions.

Bell was charged by the Securities and Exchange Commission in a Complaint on July 17, 2014, in which Bell, along with individuals Abraxas J. Discala, Marc E. Wexler, Craig L. Josephberg, and Ira Shapiro, were alleged to have engaged in a stock manipulation scheme involving multiple publicly traded companies, which allowed the individuals to accumulate several million dollars in illegal profits.

According to the Complaint, Bell conspired with Discala (chief executive officer of OmniView), a banking entity, Capital Advisors LLC, as well as Wexler (president of OmniView), in order to inflate stock prices in CodeSmart Holdings, Inc. The Complaint stated that Bell accumulated profits through selling CodeSmart shares at prices which were inflated.

Specifically, Bell, Josephberg, and Wexler, were alleged in the Complaint to have received control of three million CodeSmart shares after CodeSmart entered into a reverse merger with a shell entity in 2013. Apparently, the three million shares were prohibited from being sold to the public, as they were restricted shares.

The Complaint further stated that Bell’s investment advisory customers were targeted to purchase CodeSmart shares in May of 2013. After Bell’s customers made investments in CodeSmart, Bell reportedly received over one-hundred and twenty-five thousand shares of CodeSmart in exchange. The Complaint stated that Josephberg and Bell sold their CodeSmart shares contemporaneously with purchasing CodeSmart shares for customers. Bell apparently omitted information to customers pertaining to the financial incentives that Bell was subject to, and was cognizant that such shares had been inflated.

The Complaint stated that the CodeSmart scheme orchestrated by the aforementioned individuals had the effect of market manipulation. Specifically, CodeSmart’s market capitalization based upon stock prices in July and August of 2013 did not reflect the entity’s true value when considering the financial data available to the public. CodeSmart’s financial data in July and August of 2013 reportedly only indicated that the entity had operating losses and minimal assets. According to the Complaint, the scheme enabled Josephberg and Bell to both rake in illegal profits of $500,000.00, while Wexler and Discala raked in millions.

The Complaint further stated that Bell, along with Discala and Wexler, engaged in a conspiracy to manipulate two other entities, The Staffing Group, Ltd., and Cubed, Inc. In both of these cases, the individuals apparently engaged in coordinated efforts to trade the entities in order to make it appear as though there was market activity in such publicly traded entities. The United States District Attorney’s Office in New York stated that Bell, in October of 2014, pled guilty to conspiracy to commit securities fraud, as well as conspiracy to commit wire and mail fraud.

Guiliano Law Group

Our practice is limited to the representation of investors. We accept representation on a contingent fee basis, meaning there is no cost to you unless we make a recovery for you. There is never any charge for a consultation or an evaluation of your claim. For more information, contact us at (877) SEC-ATTY.

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