Given the amount of money involved in the stock exchange, state prosecutors pursue stockbroker fraud aggressively. Whether you are a financial officer, executive, or another type of finance employee, the potential penalties of a conviction are severe.
If you have been accused of criminal investment activity, an experienced fraud attorney can help you fight back. An Omaha stockbroker fraud lawyer can defend your rights during every step of the legal process.
Types of Stockbroker Fraud
The different types of stockbroker fraud vary significantly. Some criminal acts involve using misleading information to push a favorable transaction, while others involve the misuse of funds. A lawyer familiar with stockbroker fraud cases can investigate your accusations and develop a suitable defense strategy.
Misuse of Funds
Stockbrokers are entrusted with their clients’ investment funds and can face charges for misusing that capital. For example, a broker might pocket the money instead of investing it in a particular stock. Another common type of stockbroker fraud involves overcharging fees or misusing margin accounts.
When it comes to making trades, stockbrokers are limited in their scope. Typically, they are given a maximum level of investment they can make on their clients’ behalf. In some cases, they could be limited to specific transactions. Going beyond these limitations is a form of fraud. Any transaction made without the client’s consent can result in criminal charges.
There are many reasons why a stockbroker might misrepresent or omit critical facts about a transaction. For example, a broker might fail to mention a conflict of interest when pushing a specific investment. Additionally, he or she could misrepresent the risk of one option to urge the client toward another choice that would result in a higher commission. This type of fraud could involve either omitting important information entirely or misrepresenting its nature. In extreme cases, it could also involve the use of fake or fraudulent documentation.
Trading Without a License
The law requires brokers to maintain certain licenses to be eligible to buy and sell securities. Any broker who attempts to operate without the proper licenses could face fraud charges, especially if he or she presented themselves as licensed brokers to the public.
Laws Concerning the Stock Trade in Omaha
State law carefully regulates the work that stockbrokers do. Nebraska Revised Statutes Section 8-1102 broadly prohibits fraudulent activity related to buying or selling securities. Any attempt to violate this statute can bring both civil and criminal consequences.
Under state law, the state can prove stockbroker fraud in the following ways:
- Establish the existence of a scheme or device to defraud investors
- Provide evidence of an untrue statement of material fact used by the broker to defraud
- Provide evidence of an act or course of business that operates fraudulently
A dedicated Omaha attorney can help you determine whether the prosecutor has a valid stockbroker fraud case against you.
Discuss Your Case with an Omaha Stockbroker Fraud Attorney
Charges of stockbroker fraud are relatively uncommon under state law. However, when the state brings these charges, the resulting consequences are often severe. If you were accused of engaging in criminal activity, you could benefit from the guidance of legal counsel.
An Omaha stockbroker fraud lawyer can advise you on your next steps and help you protect your professional reputation. Call Berry Law today to get started on your defense.