James D. Sallah

James D. Sallah, Esq.

Partner

jds@sallahcox.com
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Phone: (561) 989-9080
Fax: (561) 989-9020

One Boca Place
2255 Glades Road, Suite 300E
Boca Raton, Florida 33431
United States

PRACTICE AREAS

Mr. Sallah concentrates on Securities Regulation and Enforcement, Broker-Dealer Compliance and Defense, Receivership Litigation, Securities Arbitration, and Business Litigation.

PROFESSIONAL EXPERIENCE

Since leaving the SEC in 2004, Mr. Sallah has represented national and regional brokerage firms, as well as publicly traded companies and individuals, in a variety of matters, including SEC, FINRA, stock exchange, and state regulatory investigations, internal investigations, federal and state lawsuits, administrative actions, and arbitrations. Mr. Sallah’s main focus in the broker-dealer area involves retail and institutional business, compliance and supervision, anti-money laundering, and employment issues.

Some of Mr. Sallah’s recent successes include:

  •  Represented Miami doctor in an insider trading case brought by the SEC in federal court.  After a two-week jury trial, the doctor was found not liable – SEC v. De La Maza, et al., Case No. 09-21977 (S.D. Fla.).  See the jury verdict form here.
  • Successfully argued dismissal of shareholder suit in federal court alleging insider trading – Kamin, et al. v. Acord, et al., Case No. 09-22829-Civ-Jordan (S.D. Fla.) See order here.
  • Represented nominee for Commissioner of Financial Regulation for the State of Florida in FINRA Enforcement Hearing – Dept. of Enforcement v. Carreno, No. 2006005546007.  All claims against Respondent were dismissed, with prejudice. See the decision here.
  • Represented multiple claimants/plaintiffs in multi-week FINRA arbitration hearing resulting in $7.5 million dollar award against the broker – Paula Casper, et al. v. Gary Gross, FINRA Case No. 07-00624.
  • Defense of a large regional brokerage firm in SEC investigation of firm’s institutional trading desk, market making activities, and syndicate department (declination letter by SEC)
  • Defense of CFO of publicly-traded company in SEC investigation of his conduct following company’s restatement of earnings (declination letter by SEC)
  • Defense of high-profile South Florida businessman in SEC insider trading investigation (declination letter by SEC)
  • Defense judgment in state court in favor of four departing brokers sued by a large, multi-national brokerage firm for violation of restrictive covenants

Mr. Sallah has also served in following roles:

  • Court-appointed Receiver in Katz v. MRT Holdings, et al.(S.D. Fla., Case No. 07-CV-61438-JIC) in connection with multi-million dollar Ponzi scheme
  • Special Counsel to the Receiver in SEC v. KS Advisors, Inc., et al. (M.D. Fla. Case No. 2:04-CV-1005-FtM-29DNF) to investigate and prosecute claims brokerage firm in connection with multi-million dollar hedge fund fraud
  • Independent Consultant In the Matter of vFinance Investments, Inc. (SEC Rel. No. 51530 – April 12, 2005) to review, revise, and test supervisory procedures in connection with broker-dealer’s market making/trading activities

Mr. Sallah’s reputation as a securities lawyer is recognized among his peers. In 2009, the Daily Business Review named him as the Most Effective Lawyer in the Area of Securities Law.  Moreover, the South Florida Legal Guide’s 2008, 2009, and 2010 Editions identified him as one of the “Top Up and Comers” in the field of Securities Litigation and Arbitration.

Before entering private practice, Mr. Sallah was a Senior Counsel in the Securities and Exchange Commission’s Enforcement Division in Miami, Florida. During his tenure at the SEC, Mr. Sallah handled investigations and litigation in both federal court and administrative forums, including cases involving fraudulent securities offerings, Ponzi schemes, market manipulations, municipal bonds, research analyst conflicts, public company disclosure and periodic reports, and broker-dealer and investment adviser regulation. Mr. Sallah coordinated several matters with federal and state criminal prosecutors, foreign law enforcement agencies, and self-regulatory organizations such as the NASD.

A few of Mr. Sallah’s representative cases at the SEC include:

  • SEC v. A.B. Financing and Investments, Inc., et al. – emergency action halting a $27 million dollar Ponzi scheme targeting African-Americans
  • SEC v. Rhino Ecosystems, Inc., et al., SEC v. COI Solutions, et al., and SEC v. Uncommon Media Group, Inc., at al. – cases brought simultaneously with criminal proceedings as part of largest securities sting operation in South Florida history
  • SEC v. C. Jones & Company, et al. – Internet pump-and-dump scheme
  • SEC v. Michael Morrell, et al. – case involving sell-side research analyst conflict

While at the SEC, Mr. Sallah was the Southeast Regional Office’s 2001 nominee for the Ellen Ross award for outstanding contribution and performance by a staff member. In 2002, Mr. Sallah received a personal commendation from SEC Chairman Harvey Pitt for his involvement with the U.S. Attorney’s Office and various criminal authorities in one the largest sting operations targeting securities fraud in U.S. history.

Prior to joining the SEC, Mr. Sallah was Assistant Corporate Counsel for Raymond James Financial, Inc., the largest brokerage institution in the Southeastern United States. While at Raymond James, he represented its broker-dealer subsidiaries and their associated persons in a variety of matters, including litigation and arbitration. Mr. Sallah also routinely advised senior management on legal matters affecting the broker-dealer subsidiaries to ensure compliance with the federal securities laws and requirements of regulatory organizations.

PROFESSIONAL AWARDS AND ACTIVITIES

  • Received the SEC Chairman’s Award for Excellence in 2002
  • SEC Southeast Regional Office’s 2001 nominee for the Ellen Ross Award (honors an Enforcement attorney who demonstrates exemplary commitment, enthusiasm, and performance)
  • Vice-Chair, Financial Services Committee, Florida Bar, 1999-2000
  • Executive Committee, Business Law Section, Florida Bar, 1999-2000
  • Arbitrator for FINRA and National Futures Association
  • Association of Securities and Exchange Commission Alumni

EDUCATION

Mr. Sallah received his Bachelor’s degree (summa cum laude) and Master’s degree from Ohio University and his Juris Doctor degree (cum laude) from the University of Miami School of Law. During law school, Mr. Sallah was a member of the University of Miami Law Review and following graduation selected to the Order of the Coif.

BAR MEMBERSHIPS AND JURISDICTIONS ADMITTED TO PRACTICE

Mr. Sallah is a member of the Florida and Colorado Bar Associations. He is admitted to practice in the state courts of both, as well as the U.S. District Court for the Southern and Middle Districts of Florida.