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Mauricio de la Torre: Former Dakota Securities Broker Sanctioned by FINRA

A disciplinary action taken by the Financial Industry Regulatory Authority against former Miami, Florida broker Mauricio de la Torre (CRD# 2448272) suspended him over allegations he acted as a principal without proper registration and failed to reasonably perform his supervisory duties. A former representative of Tariva Securities and Dakota Securities International, de la Torre was suspended for nine months.

According to a Letter of Acceptance, Waiver and Consent (No. 2015047215402) dated March 2019, Mauricio de la Torre acted as a principal without General Securities Principal Registration from April 2015 until December 2014, while employed at Dakota Securities International, and additionally “failed to reasonably perform his supervisory duties.” FINRA’s findings state specifically that he worked from the firm’s Miami, Florida office as its head trader and a supervisor of personnel and trading in the firm’s Caracas, Venezuela office. He was designated as supervisor of the Caracas office and of Dakota’s “institutional sales and trading desks,” positions that gave him supervisory authority over two traders in the Caracas office and over the review and approval of trades made via that office.

At the time, according to FINRA, it was two years since he was last registered as a General Securities Principal, and as such he was “required to retake and pass the Series 24 examination… in order to serve as a principal for Dakota” during the period in question. FINRA states further that he was aware that Dakota had “opened windows for him to take his Series 24 examination on three different occasions” during that period. FINRA states that he did not take the examination on two such occasions, and on a third occasion he took the examination but “failed to pass it.”

FINRA’s findings state additionally that while he was acting as supervisor, he failed in his supervisory duties by neglecting to perform certain specific reviews and surveillance measures, for instance “a daily review of transactions to detect potential insider trading and other violative or suspicious activity.” He did not do so, according to FINRA, which states he “failed to review any of the transactions effected through the Caracas branch office for such activity,” and that although he reviewed certain bond trades “for best execution purposes only,” he neglected to review them “for any other supervisory purposes,” for instance to detect possible indicators of suspicious activity.

As a result of the foregoing alleged conduct, Mauricio de la Torre was suspended from association with any FINRA member firm in any capacity for nine months.

Mauricio de la Torre is not currently registered as a broker or investment advisor. His employment history includes Tavira Securities in Miami, Florida, Global Strategic Investments, Dakota Securities International, Investment Placement Group, Torino Capital, Gleacher & Company, Mt. Rushmore Securities, Gar Wood Securities, HSBC Securities, Coutts Securities, Vestrust Securities, ING Baring Furman Selz, Deutsche Morgan Grenfell, and Citicorp Securities. He currently holds no state registrations and has passed four securities industry qualification examinations.

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