SEC charges Alpine Securities, former CEO with violating antifraud provisions
The Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) on Wednesday charged broker-dealer Alpine Securities Corporation, its former Chief Executive Officer Christopher Doubek, and its current Chief Operations Officer Joseph Walsh with engaging in a series of unauthorized securities transactions.
According to the SEC’s complaint, filed in federal district court in Nevada, in May and June 2019, Alpine engaged in improper conduct in an attempt to force hundreds of retail customers to close their accounts. Specifically, Doubek and Walsh allegedly caused Alpine to sell approximately $268,000 in customer securities without notice or customer approval on the basis that Alpine deemed the securities “worthless.”
The complaint further alleges that without authorization, and contrary to how the term is defined in its customer agreements, Doubek and Walsh caused Alpine to declare 545 customer accounts “abandoned” and to transfer approximately $54 million worth of securities out of these “abandoned” accounts and into accounts that Alpine controlled.
The SEC’s complaint charges Alpine, Doubek, and Walsh with violating the antifraud provisions of Sections 10(b) and 15(c)(1)(A) of the Securities Exchange Act of 1934 and Rules 10b-5(a) and (c) thereunder, as well as Section 17(a)(1) of the Securities Act of 1933, and seeks injunctive relief, a penny stock bar, and civil penalties against them.