Earlier this month, the SEC accused former Michigan broker Lewis J. Hunter
of using false and misleading statements to misappropriate an estimated
$300,000 from at least two brokerage clients. The SEC has alleged that
Hunter used the ill-gotten funds to pay his own personal and business expenses.
According to the SEC, Hunter was a registered representative with
HD Vest Investment Securities, Inc. from Nov. 15, 2006 through Oct. 19, 2011. Though Hunter is from Detroit,
the company was doing business as H.D. Vest Investment Services, a registered
broker-dealer headquartered in Irving, Texas.
On Dec. 31, 2007, while he was a registered representative with HD Vest
Investment Securities, Hunter became a partner in National Business Concepts
LLC (“NBC”), a purported accounting, bookkeeping, tax preparation,
and business consulting and management firm in Niles, Michigan. Allegedly,
the firm’s subsidiary, National Business Concepts International-CME
Trade Group LLC (“NBCI”), was involved in funding foreign
By 2010, Hunter owned approximately 9% of NBC, had signing privileges on
at least some of NBCI’s bank accounts, and controlled NBCI’s
According to the SEC, Hunter used his position as a registered representative
with HD Vest Investment Securities to defraud his HD Vest clients and
funnel money to NBCI.
In its order, the SEC alleged that Hunter, in or around Sept. 2010, recommended a “guaranteed”
investment in a “Canadian bank” to two long-time, elderly
clients. He allegedly told the clients that their investment had to be
funded and held outside of their HD Vest brokerage account because the
investment wasn’t offered on HD Vest’s trading platform.
On Sept. 27, 2010, Hunter allegedly had $150,000 wired from the clients’
HD Vest brokerage account into a bank account held by NBCI. The clients
were unaware of the transfer.
When the clients uncovered Hunter’s actions, he allegedly lied and
said he used the money to purchase a “Guaranteed Investment Certificate”
issued by HSBC Bank Canada.
The SEC claims Hunter told the clients that the GIC would render monthly
interest payments of 15% for a period of two years. Less than six months
later, he allegedly had another $100,000 of the clients’ funds wired
to an NBCI bank account. Once again, he allegedly told the clients that
the funds were used for a GIC.
According to the SEC’s order, Hunter never invested any of the clients’
funds as represented. Instead, he allegedly distributed fabricated bank
statements and other documentations to conceal his allegedly fraudulent actions.
The SEC also has accused Hunter of running the same investment scam on
another long-time, elderly client. Based on Hunter’s recommendation
and representations, the client agreed to invest $54,000 in US Bank.
Hunter allegedly told the investor his investment had to be funded and
held outside of his HD Vest brokerage account but that the investment
was “guaranteed” and he couldn’t lose money.
Instead of investing the funds as promised, however, Hunter allegedly deposited
the money into an NBC account under his control. The SEC has claimed that
he then used the money for his personal and business expenses. According
to the SEC, the victim never received any interest payments of any kind.
A public hearing to determine the truth of the SEC’s allegations
will be held sometime in the next two months. In the meantime, if you
invested with Lewis J. Hunter, or find yourself in a similar investment
loss situation, the Meyer Wilson may be able to help you recover your
losses. Meyer Wilson attorneys have been hired by clients with cases regarding
potential liabilities that HD Vest might have for improperly supervising
The Meyer Wilson has been hired to represent clients with claims related
to the allegedly fraudulent actions of former Michigan broker Lewis J. Hunter.
The investment fraud lawyers at Meyer Wilson devote their practice to representing
investors who have claims against brokerage firms, such as HD Vest Investment
Securities. We have represented hundreds of investors in Ohio, Michigan,
California, Texas, and across the country – and the firm has recovered
millions of dollars on the behalf of investors like you in securities
arbitration and litigation cases.