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Jul. 15, 2013 11:09 AM ET
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Seeking Alpha Analyst Since 2012

Mr. Pearce has tried, arbitrated and mediated numerous disputes involving complex securities, commodities, administrative, contract, commercial, business tort and employment law issues for over 35 years. He has represented hundreds of clients in Federal and state courts (trial and appellate) as well as administrative, arbitration, and mediation proceedings before the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC), Commodities Futures Trading Commission ("CFTC"), Florida Office Financial Regulation (FlaOFR), Florida Division of Securities & Investor Protection ("FDS"), Financial Industry Regulatory Authority (FINRA), National Association of Securities Dealers regulation, Inc. ("NASD"), New York Stock Exchange, Inc. ("NYSE") and/or National Futures Association ("NFA"). Mr. Pearce is a Florida Circuit Court Civil Mediator and a respected mediator in the FINRA Mediation Program. He also acts as a private judge or arbitrator in mini-trials and arbitration proceedings, respectively. Mr. Pearce has also served as a Federal Court-appointed Receiver- an attorney who is called upon by Federal and state regulators (SEC, CFTC and FlaOFR) to take over companies engulfed in legal problems. Areas of Practice • Courtroom Litigation, Arbitration and Mediation Proceedings Involving • Securities and Commodities Law • Business & Commercial Law • Federal, State and Industry Enforcement Actions • Employment Law A Brokerage Employees Only • Trust / Estate / Guardianship Law • Probate & Estate Administration Education • Hofstra University School of Law, Hempstead, New York J.D. - 1979 • Hofstra University School of Business, Hempstead, New York M.B.A. - 1979 • Florida Tech B.S. – 1973 Professional Associations and Memberships • American Association for Justice • Florida Justice Association • Broward County Bar Association • Broward County Justice Association • Palm Beach County Bar Association • Palm Beach County Justice Association • Public Investor Arbitration Bar Association • South Palm Beach County Bar Association Past Employment Positions • Lerner & Pearce, P.A., January 1, 1990 - December 31, 1999 • Lerner, Harris, Pearce, P.A., March 1, 1983 - December 31, 1989 • U.S. Securities & Exchange Commission, May 1, 1980 - February 28, 1983

The Financial Industry Regulatory Authority (FINRA) has rendered a default decision against John Michael Babiarz, a former broker with Worcester, Massachusetts based Jesup & Lamont Securities Corp., for settling customer complaints without Jesup & Lamont Securities knowledge or approval. FINRA's findings stated that Mr. Babiarz deceived Jesup & Lamont Securities by concealing the customer complaints, which kept Jesup & Lamont Securities from participating in or approving the settlements. Mr. Babiarz's actions delayed the regulatory filings requiring the disclosure of complaints and settlements. FINRA also stated that Mr. Babiarz caused solicited trading orders to be miscoded as unsolicited and miscoded order tickets in customer accounts. As a result, the Jesup & Lamont Securities' trade confirmations sent to customers, generated from the order entry information, falsely identified solicited orders as unsolicited. Due to Mr. Babiarz's misconduct, the Jesup & Lamont Securities' books and records, including the orders and trade confirmations, were inaccurate and contained false information. FINRA further stated that Mr. Babiarz exercised discretion in customer accounts without written authorization. The customers gave Mr. Babiarz verbal grants of discretion, but none of them provided Mr. Babiarz with written authorization to exercise discretion, and Jesup & Lamont Securities never accepted the accounts as discretionary. During the time Mr. Babiarz was employed by Jesup & Lamont Securities, it prohibited its registered representatives from exercising discretion in customer accounts. Still, Mr. Babiarz was able to conceal the discretionary nature of his trading from Jesup & Lamont Securities for almost four years. Mr. Babiarz, of Peabody, Massachusetts, was fined a total of $20,000 and suspended from association with any FINRA member in any capacity for a total of 90 business days. The fines are due and payable when and if Mr. Babiarz seeks to re-enter the securities industry, and the suspensions are in effect from February 19, 2013 through June 26, 2013.

Broker-dealers must establish and implement a reasonable supervisory system to protect their customers' interests. If broker-dealers do not establish and implement a reasonable supervisory system, they may be liable to investors for damages flowing from broker misconduct.

The most important of investors' rights is the right to be informed! This Investors' Rights blog post is by the Law Offices of Robert Wayne Pearce, P.A., located in Boca Raton, Florida. Please see our Instablog profile (left column) for ways to contact us and get answers to any of your questions about this blog post and/or any related matter.

Seeking Alpha's Disclosure: Past performance is no guarantee of future results. No recommendation or advice is being given as to whether any investment is suitable for a particular investor. Any views or opinions expressed above may not reflect those of Seeking Alpha as a whole. Seeking Alpha is not a licensed securities dealer, broker or US investment adviser or investment bank. Our analysts are third party authors that include both professional investors and individual investors who may not be licensed or certified by any institute or regulatory body.

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