MML Broker Mark Cramer Suspended: Forgery Allegations
The Financial Industry Regulatory Authority recently sanctioned LaRue, Ohio broker/adviser Mark Cramer (CRD# 1313587) following allegations he forged a customer’s signature. A representative of MML Investors Services, Cramer was issued a two-month suspension and a fine of $5,000.
According to a Letter of Acceptance, Waiver and Consent (No. 2018058482401) dated October 2019, Mark Cramer was a representative of MSI Financial when, in February 2017, he held a meeting with a prospective client concerning the opening of an IRA at the firm and the purchase of a variable annuity. FINRA states that during this meeting, the potential client “completed and signed an application to purchase a variable annuity and documents required by MSI to open an IRA.” However, according to FINRA, the forms signed by the customer “were outdated,” and as such Cramer later “forged the customer’s signature on updated versions” of the documents in question, then submitted these to his firm for processing. According to FINRA, by forging the signature and causing his firm to have inaccurate books and records, he violated FINRA Rules 2010 and 4511. The AWC Letter notes that FINRA Rule 2010 requires FINRA members to observe “high standards of commercial honor and just and equitable principles of trade,” which it states are inconsistent with the forgery of customer signatures. FINRA Rule 4511, meanwhile, requires FINRA members and associated persons to “make and preserve books and records” in compliance with FINRA and SEC rules.
Mark Cramer’s BrokerCheck report lists one customer complaint against him. Filed in 2018, it alleges that as a representative of MSI Financial Services, he forged documents connected to a variable annuity purchase and misrepresented information about the annuity. The complaint reached a settlement of $456,990.
Mark Cramer is currently a representative of MML Investors Services in LaRue, Ohio, where he has been registered since January 2020. His previous registrations include MML Investors Services, MSI Financial Services, and Metropolitan Life Insurance Company. He has passed two securities industry qualifying examinations and currently holds one state securities license. (Information current as of April 20, 2020.)