securities & related litigation
Conrad O’Brien handles a wide range of securities-related disputes in judicial proceedings, regulatory investigations, and enforcement proceedings. Our clients include investment advisers, issuers, directors and officers, and individual investors. We also represent clients in disputes arising out of transactions with regulated broker/dealers; serve as arbitrators and chairpersons in FINRA customer complaint arbitrations; and represent both brokers and brokerage firms in restrictive covenant disputes arising out of broker employment contracts.
Representative matters include the following:
- The chief financial officer of a bankrupt subprime lender chose Conrad O’Brien to represent him in a federal securities class action and state court litigation in Pennsylvania. We successfully settled the federal and state cases for our client, negotiating on his behalf with the D&O insurance carrier to pay the settlement amounts.
- Conrad O’Brien represented a former officer of a medical equipment financing company in proceedings which arose after the company went bankrupt. The proceedings included lawsuits by the bankruptcy trustee, shareholders, bondholders, and financial institutions alleging securities fraud, breach of fiduciary duty, and common law fraud claims and investigations by the SEC and the Department of Justice. The DOJ declined prosecution and, after a lengthy Wells process, the SEC declined to pursue an enforcement action against our client. Two of the civil cases were settled for a fraction of the claimed damages. The other two cases are still pending.
- Conrad O’Brien represented a number of individual investors in a securities fraud investigation based on allegations of insider trading with respect to the sale and merger of a publicly traded corporation in the real estate industry. Conrad O’Brien convinced the SEC not to pursue any action against our clients.
- Conrad O’Brien brought suit and filed a complaint in arbitration on behalf of an individual who, on the recommendation of the client’s investment adviser, had made a number of significant investments in auction rate securities. The actions against the issuer, investment adviser and broker dealer alleged various claims arising out of defendants’ incomplete and misleading disclosures. We settled the case favorably for the client, obtaining a nearly 100% recovery of the amount invested in the securities.
- Conrad O'Brien represented the issuer of variable annuity products in a proposed securities class action alleging misrepresentations/omissions in the sale of the securities. Conrad O’Brien successfully moved to dismiss the case under the Securities Litigation Uniform Standards Act (SLUSA), and this result was affirmed on appeal.
- Conrad O'Brien represented a securities brokerage firm in a putative securities class action relating to the sale of promissory notes. The case was settled for nuisance value.
- Conrad O'Brien has successfully represented numerous individuals in FINRA actions against broker dealers on claims based on suitability, churning, and misrepresentation.
- Conrad O'Brien currently represents a corporate officer regarding allegations that he violated section 10(b) of the Securities Exchange Act, and Rule 10b-5 thereunder, and section 20(a) of the Securities Exchange Act relating to the publication of allegedly misleading or false information in connection with the sale of unregistered securities.
- Conrad O'Brien currently represents an investment advisor in connection with an SEC investigation relating to allegations of breach of fiduciary duty.