WASHINGTON, DC, September 30, 2010 — Certified Financial Planner Board of Standards, Inc. announces that it has issued interim suspensions to Daniel J. Trolaro of Oakland, New Jersey, and Sandra M. Venetis of Branchburg, New Jersey, suspending their right to use the CFP® certification marks, effective immediately.
Public disciplinary actions taken by CFP Board, in order of increasing severity, include letters of admonition, suspensions and permanent revocations. The basis for each decision can be found in a Disciplinary Action Report below and on CFP Board's Web site. Consumers may check on any planner's disciplinary history and certification status with CFP Board at www.CFP.net/search.
CFP Board's Standards of Professional Conduct, which includes the Code of Ethics and Professional Responsibility, Rules of Conduct and Financial Planning Practice Standards, sets forth the ethical standards for financial planners who hold the CFP® certification. CFP Board enforces its ethical standards by investigating incidents of alleged unethical behavior, and following the procedures established in CFP Board's
Disciplinary Rules and Procedures. In cases where violations are found, CFP Board may impose discipline ranging from a
private censure or public letter of admonition to the suspension or revocation of the right to use the CFP® marks. The Disciplinary Rules
and Procedures set forth a fair process for investigating matters and imposing discipline where necessary.
CFP Board's enforcement process is a critical consumer protection. CFP® practitioners agree to abide by CFP Board's Standards of Professional Conduct, which sets forth their ethical responsibilities to the public, clients and employers. CFP® practitioners agree to act fairly
and diligently when providing clients with financial planning advice and services, putting the clients' interests first.
Daniel J. Trolaro (Oakland): In September 2010, CFP Board issued an Interim Suspension Order suspending Mr. Trolaro’s right to use the CFP® certification marks. CFP Board initiated interim suspension proceedings after discovering that Mr. Trolaro was indicted for allegedly defrauding nine clients out of more than $1.9 million. Mr. Trolaro is alleged to have committed theft by obtaining clients’ funds, which he was to invest on their behalf, but instead kept for his personal use. Mr. Trolaro failed to respond to CFP Board’s Order to Show Cause within 20 calendar days, as required by CFP Board’s Disciplinary Rules and Procedures. As a result, the allegations set forth in the Order to Show Cause were deemed admitted, and the Interim Suspension Order was automatically issued, effective September 28, 2010. Under the Interim Suspension Order, Mr. Trolaro’s right to use the CFP® certification marks is suspended pending CFP Board’s completed investigation.
Sandra M. Venetis (Branchburg): In September 2010, CFP Board issued an Interim Suspension Order suspending Ms. Venetis’ right to use the CFP® certification marks. CFP Board initiated interim suspension proceedings after discovering that the Securities and Exchange Commission (“SEC”) filed a Complaint against Ms. Venetis and three firms controlled by Ms. Venetis. The SEC’s Complaint alleged that Ms. Venetis operated a fraudulent multi-million dollar offering which involved selling phony promissory notes to investors, several of whom were retired or unsophisticated. Ms. Venetis allegedly misappropriated approximately $11 million from these investors. The Complaint alleged that Ms. Venetis made material misrepresentations to these investors and that the promissory notes and other offerings were not supported by any investments, assets, or related revenues. Ms. Venetis settled the SEC charges by consenting to the relief the SEC sought in its Complaint, including the entry of a court order enjoining her from future violations of the above provisions of the securities laws, disgorgement of ill-gotten gains with prejudgment interest, and imposing financial penalties, an asset freeze, accountings, and the appointment of an independent monitor. Ms. Venetis failed to respond to CFP Board’s Order to Show Cause within 20 calendar days, as required by CFP Board’s Disciplinary Rules and Procedures. As a result, the allegations set forth in the Order to Show Cause were deemed admitted, and the Interim Suspension Order was automatically issued, effective September 28, 2010. Under the Interim Suspension Order, Ms. Venetis’ right to use the CFP® certification marks is suspended pending CFP Board’s completed investigation.
ABOUT CFP BOARD: The mission of Certified Financial Planner Board of Standards, Inc. is to benefit the public by granting the CFP® certification and upholding it as the recognized standard of excellence for personal financial planning. The Board of Directors, in furthering CFP Board's mission, acts on behalf of the public, CFP® certificants and other stakeholders. CFP Board owns the certification marks CFP®, CERTIFIED FINANCIAL PLANNER™ and in the U.S., which it awards to individuals who successfully complete CFP Board's initial and ongoing certification requirements. CFP Board currently authorizes more than 61,000 individuals to use these marks in the United States.
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CFP® - The Recognized Standard of Excellence in
Personal Financial Planning
Dan Drummond, Director of Public Relations