SEC Settles Securities Fraud Charges Filed Against Stephen Douglas Pizzuti

The Law Offices of Daniel J. Miller, LLC – 410-Law-Firm is currently investigating allegations of fraud against Stephen Douglas Pizzuti in connection with an SEC settlement.

According to the settlement posted on www.sec.gov

“Pizzuti (CRD 1461660), age 58, is a resident of DeBary, Florida. At the time of the misconduct that led to his conviction, Pizzuti was associated with a firm that was a Commission-registered broker-dealer and a state-registered investment adviser. Between January 1986 and May 2015, Pizzuti was associated with other broker-dealers registered with the Commission, some of which were also registered as investment advisers. He held Series 7, 24, and 63 licenses. In August 2013 and May 2014, the Financial Industry Regulatory Authority, Inc. (“FINRA”) sanctioned Pizzuti by fining him and suspending him from association with FINRA members. See FINRA Disciplinary Proceeding Nos. 2009017195204, 2011027666902. Merrimac Corporate Securities, Inc. (“Merrimac”), a broker-dealer Pizzuti controlled, was also a respondent in these proceedings. In March 2016, in No. 2009017195204, FINRA expelled Merrimac from membership. On July 17, 2019, the Commission denied Merrimac’s application for review of FINRA’s decision imposing sanctions in No. 2011027666902. See Securities Act Rel. No. 10662.”

The settlement continues with the conviction information:

“On November 5, 2019, Pizzuti pled guilty to one count of concealment of assets in a bankruptcy case, in violation of Title 18, United States Code, Section 152(1), before the United States District Court for the Middle District of Florida, in United States v. Stephen Douglas Pizzuti, Case No. 6:19-cr-00204-RBD-GJK-1. On January 13, 2020, Pizzuti was sentenced to two years probation. The Court also ordered forfeiture and restitution, both in the amount of $28,002.40.”

In connection with that plea, Pizzuti admitted that on October 23, 2015, he and his wife filed a joint Chapter 7 bankruptcy petition that failed to identify as an asset Pizzuti’s book of business from his time as a broker. On November 1, 2015, Pizzuti sold his book of business for $300,000 consisting of an immediate partial payment, with the balance due over time. On November 24, 2015, at a Section 341 creditor’s meeting, Pizzuti, under oath, falsely represented that he had not transferred or sold any assets beyond what was disclosed in the bankruptcy petition. Over the course of a year, Pizzuti received over $28,000 from the buyer of the book of business, which Pizzuti concealed by receiving the funds in cash or in the form of wire transfers to his wife and son.

III.

In view of the allegations made by the Division of Enforcement, the Commission deems it necessary and appropriate in the public interest that public administrative proceedings be instituted to determine:

A. Whether the allegations set forth in Section II hereof are true and, in connection therewith, to afford Respondent an opportunity to establish any defenses to such allegations;

B. What, if any, remedial action is appropriate in the public interest against Respondent pursuant to Section 15(b) of the Exchange Act;

C. What, if any, remedial action is appropriate in the public interest against Respondent pursuant to Section 203(f) of the Advisers Act; and

D. Whether, pursuant to Section 15(b) of the Exchange Act, it is appropriate and in the public interest to bar Respondent from participating in any offering of penny stock, including: acting as a promoter, finder, consultant, agent or other person who engages in activities with a broker, dealer or issuer for purposes of the issuance or trading in any penny stock; or inducing or attempting to induce the purchase or sale of any penny stock.

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IV.

IT IS ORDERED that a public hearing before the Commission for the purpose of taking evidence on the questions set forth in Section III hereof shall be convened at a time and place to be fixed by further order of the Commission, pursuant to Rule 110 of the Commission’s Rules of Practice, 17 C.F.R. § 201.110.

IT IS FURTHER ORDERED that Respondent shall file an Answer to the allegations contained in this Order within twenty (20) days after service of this Order, as provided by Rule 220(b) of the Commission’s Rules of Practice, 17 C.F.R. § 201.220(b).

IT IS FURTHER ORDERED that the Division of Enforcement and Respondent shall conduct a prehearing conference pursuant to Rule 221 of the Commission’s Rules of Practice,
17 C.F.R. § 201.221, within fourteen (14) days of service of the Answer. The parties may meet in person or participate by telephone or other remote means; following the conference, they shall file a statement with the Office of the Secretary advising the Commission of any agreements reached at said conference. If a prehearing conference was not held, a statement shall be filed with the Office of the Secretary advising the Commission of that fact and of the efforts made to meet and confer.

If Respondent fails to file the directed Answer, or fails to appear at a hearing or conference after being duly notified, the Respondent may be deemed in default and the proceedings may be determined against him upon consideration of this Order, the allegations of which may be deemed to be true as provided by Rules 155(a), 220(f), 221(f) and 310 of the Commission’s Rules of Practice, 17 C.F.R. §§ 201.155(a), 201.220(f), 201.221(f), and 201.310.

This Order shall be served forthwith upon Respondent by any means permitted by the Commission’s Rules of Practice.

Attention is called to Rule 151(b) and (c) of the Commission’s Rules of Practice, 17 C.F.R. § 201.151(b) and (c), providing that when, as here, a proceeding is set before the Commission, all papers (including those listed in the following paragraph) shall be filed with the Office of the Secretary and all motions, objections, or applications will be decided by the Commission. The Commission requests that an electronic courtesy copy of each filing should be emailed to APFilings@sec.gov in PDF text-searchable format. Any exhibits should be sent as separate attachments, not a combined PDF.

The Commission finds that it would serve the interests of justice and not result in prejudice to any party to provide, pursuant to Rule 100(c) of the Commission’s Rules of Practice, 17 C.F.R. § 201.100(c), that notwithstanding any contrary reference in the Rules of Practice to filing with or disposition by a hearing officer, all filings, including those under Rules 210, 221, 222, 230, 231, 232, 233, and 250 of the Commission’s Rules of Practice, 17 C.F.R. §§ 201.210, 221, 222, 230, 231, 232, 233, and 250, shall be directed to and, as appropriate, decided by the Commission. This proceeding shall be deemed to be one under the 75-day timeframe specified in Rule of Practice 360(a)(2)(i), 17 C.F.R. § 201.360(a)(2)(i), for the purposes of applying Rules of Practice 233 and 250, 17 C.F.R. §§ 201.233 and 250.

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The Commission finds that it would serve the interests of justice and not result in prejudice to any party to provide, pursuant to Rule 100(c) of the Commission’s Rules of Practice, 17 C.F.R. § 201.100(c), that the Commission shall issue a decision on the basis of the record in this proceeding, which shall consist of the items listed at Rule 350(a) of the Commission’s Rules of Practice, 17 C.F.R. § 201.350(a), and any other document or item filed with the Office of the Secretary and accepted into the record by the Commission. The provisions of Rule 351 of the Commission’s Rules of Practice, 17 C.F.R. § 201.351, relating to preparation and certification of a record index by the Office of the Secretary or the hearing officer are not applicable to this proceeding.

The Commission will issue a final order resolving the proceeding after one of the following: (A) The completion of post-hearing briefing in a proceeding where the public hearing has been completed; (B) The completion of briefing on a motion for a ruling on the pleadings or a motion for summary disposition pursuant to Rule 250 of the Commission’s Rules of Practice, 17 C.F.R. § 201.250, where the Commission has determined that no public hearing is necessary; or(C) The determination that a party is deemed to be in default under Rule 155 of the Commission’s Rules of Practice, 17 C.F.R. § 201.155, and no public hearing is necessary.

In the absence of an appropriate waiver, no officer or employee of the Commission engaged in the performance of investigative or prosecuting functions in this or any factually related proceeding will be permitted to participate or advise in the decision of this matter, except as witness or counsel in proceedings held pursuant to notice. Since this proceeding is not “rule making” within the meaning of Section 551 of the Administrative Procedure Act, it is not deemed subject to the provisions of Section 553 delaying the effective date of any final Commission action.

By the Commission.

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Vanessa A. Countryman Secretary”

Miller Law – The Law Offices of Daniel J. Miller, LLC, a Baltimore Securities Law firm, currently represents investors for claims of investment losses from over concentration, irregular options trading, margin and unsuitability claims, broker fraud, securities fraud, securities litigation and other broker and broker/dealers for investment losses and fraud.  If you or anyone you know have experienced investment losses from the actions above or other situations, please call 410-LAW-FIRM ( 410-529-3476 )or fill out the contact us form for a no cost consultation and evaluation of your claim.

 

 

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