Rand Getlin and Jason Cole
The Financial Industry Regulatory Authority announced Thursday that former financial adviser Jeff Rubin accepted its findings that he made unsuitable investment recommendations to 32 players. Those investments resulted in the loss of approximately $40 million in an illegal Alabama Casino operation.
Rubin, who founded Pro Sports Financial, used his relationship with prominent agent Drew Rosenhaus to help sign at least 18 one-time Rosenhaus clients to invest in the failed casino project. Among those clients were past and present NFL players Jevon Kearse, Fred Taylor, Frank Gore, Plaxico Burress, and Terrell Owens. The NFL Players Association had been investigating the relationship between Rubin and Rosenhaus at one point, but it is unclear if that investigation is ongoing.
Although Rubin accepted FINRA's findings, he did not admit or deny charges. By accepting FINRA's findings, Rubin has been barred for life from working in a FINRA member firm in any capacity.
One attorney, who represented more than 30 players in a related portion of the casino matter, is not surprised by FINRA's findings.
Rand Getlin and Jason Cole at Not for Attribution 2 yrs ago
By Rand Getlin and Jason Cole
NFL Players Association executive director DeMaurice Smith referred long-time former colleagues to defend Drew Rosenhaus during an NFLPA arbitration, Yahoo! Sports has learned.
That action has ruffled the feathers of multiple prominent agents who spoke to Yahoo! Sports on the condition of anonymity, expressing frustration at what they termed a significant conflict of interest. The agents have alleged that Smith’s referral – essentially aiding Rosenhaus in defending himself before an NFLPA arbitrator – is a clear example of Smith protecting an agent rather than impartially governing.
“It’s a major conflict of interest for the executive director of the NFLPA to be referring attorneys to Rosenhaus,” one agent said.
The paramount issue at hand is that the NFLPA may eventually have to sanction Rosenhaus in his case, which involves a dispute between the well-known agent and former employee Danny Martoe. Martoe was a longtime employee of Rosenhaus Sports Representation before being fired in 2012. He is now seeking more than $1 million in commissions and damages stemming from his work with Rosenhaus.
Out-of-work NFL wide receiver Terrell Owens is suing a financial adviser, a South Florida bank and others for mismanaging his finances, according to documents obtained by Yahoo! Sports.
Owens alleges that the close relationship between defendants Jeff Rubin, his financial firm (Pro Sports Financial) and Florida-based Bank Atlantic led to PSF employees engaging in various instances of financial mismanagement of Owens’ account without his knowledge.
Among Owens' claims in the filing:
• That PSF opened an account at Florida-based Bank Atlantic without his knowledge or authorization.
• That Owens' signature on that account was forged.
• That PSF employee Tequilla Harris and others made "numerous unusual and extraordinary withdrawals" from that account without Owens' authorization.
• That PSF made "unauthorized loans and or funds transfers" to other PSF clients who held accounts at Bank Atlantic, including former NFL player Jevon Kearse and another Rubin-controlled company, Pankas Holdings.
• That PSF, Rubin and others failed to follow NFL Players Association regulations on investments.
Outside the Game from Yahoo! Sports:
MIAMI – The NFL Players Association is investigating the relationship between agent Drew Rosenhaus and a former financial adviser who persuaded a number of players to invest in a failed Alabama bingo casino, a source with knowledge of the inquiry told Yahoo! Sports.
According to multiple sources who talked to Y! Sports on the record and for background, Rosenhaus and Jeff Rubin had an unusually close business relationship that spanned upwards of seven years. That relationship might have resulted in Rosenhaus breaching the fiduciary duties all agents who are certified by the NFLPA owe to their clients. The relationship has been scrutinized in part because of a series of issues surrounding Rubin, who is at the center of a bankruptcy filing for the failed casino that cost the players as much as $43.6 million.
Starting in 2003, Rubin was questioned about financial transactions that could have raised red flags for a financial adviser, a five-month Y! Sports investigation has found. That included allegedly mismanaging a player's game checks in 2003 and settling an issue related to allegedly falsified insurance documents in 2004.
Martoe declined further comment, Cornwell said.
A suspended employee of Rosenhaus Sports is alleging that the prominent agency owes him more than $1 million in commissions and compensatory damages, according to an arbitration filing with the NFL Players Association. Yahoo! Sports previously obtained a memo regarding the arbitration, but full details of the filing were unknown.
Rosenhaus Sports vice president Danny Martoe accuses brothers Drew and Jason Rosenhaus of breach of contract and fraud. Martoe, who has worked with the agency since 2005 but is currently on administrative leave with pay, says he "contributed to over ninety-one (91) players becoming Rosenhaus Sports clients," according to the filing. Among those clients are Dallas Cowboys wide receiver Dez Bryant, who recently fired Drew Rosenhaus, San Francisco 49ers safety Dashon Goldson, Carolina Panthers tight end Greg Olsen, Pittsburgh Steelers tight end Lawrence Timmons and New England Patriots tight end Rob Gronkowski.
Among Martoe's specific allegations in the filing:
Prominent NFL agents Drew and Jason Rosenhaus have been accused of breach of contract and fraud in an arbitration filing with the National Football Players Association by Rosenhaus Sports Representation vice president Danny Martoe, according to a legal memorandum obtained by Yahoo! Sports.
If the accusations against the Rosenhauses are true, the brothers could be subject to NFLPA disciplinary action, including suspensions.
[Related: Terrell Owens gets tryout with Seahawks]
According to the memo, when Cornwell informed another of Rosenhaus' attorneys, David Dickieson, of the alleged misconduct, Dickieson responded to Cornwell saying, if the allegations were true "Swickle's actions were a crime."
"Suffice it to say the allegations raised are untrue and are being made by people with motives to try to sway public opinion and harm the Rosenhaus Sports name," Drew Rosenhaus said. "Ultimately, their efforts will not work."
Swickle didn't respond to a request for comment.