Tonya Nicole Smoake’s Past
Tonya Nicole Smoake became a General Securities Representative (GSR) with FINRA in 2007 through a connection with a FINRA member. The respondent joined Porshe Kaplan Sterling Investments (the company) in March 2017 and became registered as a GSR. On May 14, 2019, the firm filed a Uniform Termination Notice for Securities Industry Registration (Form US), which said that Tonya Nicole Smoake had quit willingly as of May 14, 2019.
The Respondent joined up with another FINRA member on May 16, 2019. Respondent’s new boss filed a Form US on September 9, 2020, saying that Tonya Nicole Smoake had quit voluntarily on August 31, 2020. The respondent is not a FINRA member at the moment, but Article V, Section 4 of FINRA’s ByLaws says that the Respondent is still subject to FINRA’s authority.
Report on Tonya Nicole Smoake
FINRA Rule 3280(b) says that “[b]efore participating in any private securities transaction, an associated person shall provide written notice to the member with which he is associated, describing in detail the proposed transaction and the person’s proposed role therein and stating whether he has received or may receive selling compensation in connection with the transaction.” “Private securities transaction” is defined by FINRA Rule 3280(e) as “any securities transaction outside the normal course or scope of a person’s employment with a member.”
A violation of FINRA Rule 3280 is also a violation of FINRA Rule 2010, which says that representatives of member firms “shall observe high standards of commercial honor and fair and equitable principles of trade.”
From April to September 2017, Tonya Nicole Smoake helped four buyers put about $850,000 into a registered investment advisor (RIA) that was raising money through a security offering under Regulation D of the Securities Act of 1933. From September 2018 to January 2019, Tonya Nicole Smoake also helped eight investors spend about $780,000 in the RIA’s holding company.
The holding company also raised money through a security offering under Regulation D of the Securities Act of 1933. At the time of these offers, the respondent was the RIA’s chief operations officer. She was connected with the RIA and the things that the CEO of the RIA was selling. Tonya Nicole Smoake gave offering documents to the investors, collected signed documents from the investors, answered questions from the investors, and organized payments from the investors. The Respondent didn’t get any fees when the securities were sold. None of the investors was a customer of the business.
In March 2017, Respondent told the company what her job was at the RIA. But she didn’t tell the business in writing that she was going to take part in the above-mentioned securities offerings.
Also, Tonya Nicole Smoake lied on the firm’s yearly compliance questionnaires in November 2017 and November 2018 when she said she hadn’t been involved in any private securities transactions that she hadn’t already told the firm about.
Respondent broke FINRA Rules 3280 and 2010 as a result.
Sanctions, penalties, and fines
- A $5,000 fine and
- a ban from working with any FINRA member in any way for 12 months.
The fine must be paid either right away when the person rejoins a member company or before he or she applies or asks for relief from any statutory disqualification caused by this or any other event or proceeding.
Tonya Nicole Smoake specifically and freely gives up any right to say that he or she can’t pay the monetary sanction in this case, either now or at any time after this AWC is signed.
Tonya Nicole Smoake knows that if she is banned or suspended from working with any FINRA member, she will be subject to a statutory disqualification, as described in Article III, Section 4 of FINRA’s By-Laws, which includes Section 3(a)(39) of the Securities Exchange Act of 1934. During the time she is barred or suspended, she can’t work for or with any FINRA member in any way, even in a clerical or religious position. See Rules 8310 and 8311 of the FINRA.
Review of Tonya Nicole Smoake
Respondent sold about $1.6 million worth of private stocks without the firm’s knowledge or approval between April 2017 and January 2019. This was against FINRA Rules 3280 and 2010, and it was illegal.
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Help for Tonya Nicole Smoake’s Victims
If you lost money because Tonya Nicole Smoake lied to you, sold you bad investments, or gave you bad advice about how to spend, you can file a claim. Then you can go to court and get what’s right. Fraud, bad behavior, and not doing what you’re supposed to do should not be taken easily, especially in this business. If your financial advisor or brokerage company doesn’t follow FINRA’s rules and regulations, you should tell the authorities or go to court.
Financial advisors are required by law and regulation to suggest to their clients the best investments and investment plans. Their suggestions should be in the best interest of their clients and fit with their goals and wants. In the same way, the brokerage company that hires financial advisors has a legal and regulatory duty to keep a close eye on and oversee their practices and behavior.
They need to make sure that the financial expert isn’t trying to trick them or isn’t favoring certain investments for no good reason. If the financial advisor or brokerage company doesn’t do these things, the client or customer may be able to get all or some of their money back.
When they advise about investments and investment plans, financial advisors need to think about what is best for their clients. Reasonable basis suitability means that the advisor should do their best to analyze and point out the risks and benefits of the investment or investment plan they recommend.
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