June 14, 2013
The way things have devolved on Wall Street, we pretty much have come to accept that a lot of industry professional steal from their public customers. In this case, things seem to have gotten so desperate that the stockbrokers are now stealing from each other!
For the purpose of proposing a settlement of rule violations alleged by the Financial Industry Regulatory Authority ("FINRA"), without admitting or denying the findings, prior to a regulatory hearing, and without an adjudication of any issue, Stephen Blair Sherwood submitted a Letter of Acceptance, Waiver and Consent ("AWC"), which FINRA accepted. In the Matter of Stephen Blair Sherwood, Respondent (AWC 2012034755101, June 7, 2013).
Sherwood first entered the securities industry in 2002. Between March 16, 2011,and October 24, 2012. Sherwood was associated with FINRA member firm Park Avenue Securities, LLC and also employed as an executive vice president by the Guardian Life Insurance Company of America, d/b/a NRL Wealth Creation Strategies. The AWC asserts that Sherwood had no prior disciplinary history.
Guardian Life issued $577.67 and a $619.49 payroll checks respectively dated September 28, and October 15, 2012, to a coworker of Sherwood's. Between September 28 and October 24, 2012, Sherwood allegedly forged the coworker's signature on the two checks.
When the forgery was discovered around October 22, Sherwood, attempting to conceal his misconduct and asked the coworker to send an email to a supervisor claiming that the signatures had not been forged. Although the coworker initially complied, in a second email sent the following day, the coworker retracted the earlier claim and affirmed that the endorsement signatures had been forged without authorization.
Sherwood reimbursed the coworker for the converted funds.
Out And Out
On October 2, 2012, Sherwood was terminated by Park Avenue Securities and Guardian Life Insurance Company as noted in a Uniform Termination Notice for Securities Industry Registration (Form U5) filed on November 13, 2012.
FINRA asserted that Sherwood's forgery, conversion,and subsequent attempt to conceal the misconduct violated FINRA Rule 2010. In accordance with the terms of the AWC, FINRA imposed upon Sherwood a Bar from association with any member of FINRA in any capacity.