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Wesley Perkins: SEC Complaint Against Lafayette Financial Advisor

A pending civil complaint by the Securities and Exchange Commission against former Lafayette, Louisiana broker and investment advisor Wesley Perkins (CRD# 4565682) alleges he engaged in a fraudulent “cherry-picking” investment scheme that generated ill-gotten gains of at least $700,000. A former representative of Purshe Kaplan Sterling and owner of World Tree Financial, Perkins is currently not registered with any FINRA firm.

Filed in 2018 in the US District Court for the Western District of Louisiana, the SEC complaint alleges that as owner of World Tree Financial, Wesley Perkins engaged in an investment scheme called “cherry-picking.” In cherry picking schemes, investment traders allocate a day’s favorable trades to themselves or favorable accounts, while allocating unfavorable trades to the accounts of other, or “disfavored” clients, the SEC’s complaint explains. In the alleged scheme, Perkins and World Tree allocated winning trades to his account and some clients’ accounts, while the losing trades were allocated to “accounts held by a disfavored client,” resulting in “substantial losses” for that client and profits for Perkins and his favored customers, one of whom was his wife and the firm’s chief compliance officer. The SEC alleges that these activities, and misrepresentations Perkins and World Tree made relating to them, constituted violations of securities law. The SEC seeks civil and administrative penalties and/or fines, an injunction, and monetary penalties other than fines in the complaint, which remains pending.

Wesley Perkins’ disclosure records also list five settled or pending customer complaints against him.

A pending 2018 complaint alleges that as a representative of World Tree Financial, Wesley Perkins breached his fiduciary duty, breached contract, fraudulently and negligently misrepresented material facts, and engaged in civil conspiracy and unjust enrichment. The complaint alleges damages of $1,100,000.

A 2016 complaint alleged that as a representative of World Tree Financial, Wesley Perkins omitted material facts and risks, and violated industry “know your customer” rules. The complaint reached a settlement of $55,000.

A 2016 complaint alleged that as a representative of Purshe Kaplan Sterling, he did not properly manage the claimants’ account according to their investment objectives. The complaint reached a settlement of $55,000.

A 2009 complaint alleged that as a representative of Chase Investment Services Corporation, he engaged in unauthorized trading. The complaint reached a settlement of $5,908.19.

A 2007 complaint alleged that as a representative of Chase Investment Services Corporation, he recommended unsuitable securities. The complaint reached a settlement of $12,746.

Wesley Perkins is currently not registered as a broker or investment advisor. His employment history includes Purshe Kaplan Sterling Investments in Lafayette, Louisiana; Chase Investment Services Corporation in Lafayette, Louisiana; and Banc One Securities Corporation in Chicago, Illinois. He currently holds zero state licenses and has passed four securities industry qualification examinations.

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