According to a FINRA press release, broker Jeffrey Rubin of Lighthouse Point, Florida, is barred from the securities industry for making unsuitable recommendations to invest in illiquid, high-risk securities issued in connection with a now-bankrupt casino in Alabama. Mr. Rubin was barred after after an investigation spearheaded by FINRA's Departments of Enforcement and Member Regulation.
Mr. Rubin, while a registered broker at Lincoln Financial Advisors Corporation and Alterna Capital Corporation, also operated a Florida-based company, Pro Sports Financial. Pro Sports Financial provided financial-related "concierge" services to professional athletes for an annual fee. Rubin recommended that one of his NFL clients invest thr majority of his liquid net worth, approximately $3.5 million, in four high-risk securities. Without informing his employer member firm and without their approval, Rubin recommended and facilitated his client investing $2 million in the now failed Alabama casino project.
Mr. Rubin referred other investors to the casino project while employed by Alterna Capital Corporation and International Assets Advisory, LLC without the firms' knowledge or approval. FINRA found that from approximately January 2008 through March 2011, 30 additional NFL player clients of Mr. Rubin's concierge firm, Pro Sports Financial, invested approximately $40 million in the casino project. These investments provided Mr. Rubin with a 4 percent ownership stake in the defunct casino and $500,000 from the project promoter for these referrals.
FINRA's Executive Vice President and Chief of Enforcement, Brad Bennett, said, "This case demonstrates how broker misconduct can target high-income, inexperienced, and vulnerable investors. Jeffrey Rubin took advantage of professional athletes who placed their trust in him." In settling this matter, Rubin neither admitted nor denied the charges, but consented to the entry of FINRA's findings.