Public records provided by the Financial Industry Regulatory Authority (FINRA) and accessed on December 20, 2017 indicate that former Texas-based Sunbelt Securities broker/adviser James Tao has been sanctioned by FINRA and barred from acting as a broker or otherwise associating with a broker-dealer firm. Fitapelli Kurta is interested in hearing from investors who have complaints regarding Mr. Tao (CRD# 3260224).
James Tao has spent eight years in the securities industry and was most recently registered with Sunbelt Securities in Houston, Texas (2012-2016). Previous registrations include Merrill Lynch in Houston, Texas (2011-2012); Assent LLC in Geneva, Illinois (2004-2006); and Electronic Trading Group in New York, New York (1999-2001). He has passed four securities industry examinations: Series 66 (Uniform Combined State Law Examination), which he obtained on March 29, 2011; Series 63 (Uniform Securities Agent State Law Examination), which he obtained on July 5, 2005; Series 7 (General Securities Representative Examination), which he obtained on February 25, 2011; and Series 55 (Limited Representative-Equity Trader Exam), which he obtained on August 12, 1999. He is currently not registered with any state or firm.
According to his BrokerCheck report, James Tao was discharged from his former employer in connection to alleged rule violations, has been sanctioned by FINRA, and was recently named in a pending complaint by the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC).
In December 2017 he was named in a complaint by the SEC alleging he made material misrepresentations and omissions in connection with the offer and sale of units in a private equity fund called PVC, LLC which he and another defendant formed “to purportedly invest in Houston-area technology start-up companies” and for which they raised “approximately $860,000” without his member fir’s knowledge or approval. The SEC also alleges he acted as an unregistered broker, falsely claimed that “investor funds would be held in escrow and returned if PVC did not raise at least $2.5 million,” failed to timely or adequately disclose that the fund was investing in companies he owned or in which he held a personal stake, misled investors about the use of investor funds, and misappropriated investor funds for his own personal benefit. The complaint remains pending.
In August 2016 FINRA sanctioned him following allegations he failed to respond to a request for information. He was barred from association with any FINRA member in any capacity.
In March 2016 he was discharged from his position at Sunbelt Securities following allegations he failed to provide prior written notification and obtain written approval for private securities transactions and outside business activities.
If you or someone you know has lost money investing with James Tao, call Fitapelli Kurta at 877-238-4175 for a free consultation. You may be eligible to recoup your losses. Fitapelli Kurta accepts all cases on a contingency basis: we only get paid if and when you collect money. Time to file your claim may be limited, so we encourage you to avoid delay. Call 877-238-4175 now to speak to an attorney for free.