As an Enforcement Branch Chief at the U.S. Securities
and Exchange Commission, Pat Huddleston saw thousands
of investors lose their life savings to reckless
stockbrokers and outright fraud. In a decade of
representing investors in private practice since
leaving the SEC, Pat has often had to tell prospective
clients that there is little hope of recovering
their money, either because the offending brokerage
firm is defunct or because the “investment” was
never anything more than a well-disguised scam.
In most cases, a pre-investment review of the
broker’s background or the offering materials
for the proposed “investment” would have revealed
the danger lurking on the other side of the transaction.
An SEC Enforcement Branch Chief sees things that
investors don’t. Boilerplate that is indecipherable
to the investor may be a red flag to the Branch
Chief. Most importantly, investors cannot assess
what is not said, while the Branch Chief knows
about omissions that scream “warning!”
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