Cyberbullying has officially hit Wall Street.
When Edward Jones broker Paul Betenbaugh in California wanted to exact revenge on a rival, he went too far. He impersonated the competitor and posted ads on the internet that solicited men for sexual encounters, according to a Tuesday order from the Financial Industry Regulatory Authority.
The ads included the other broker’s business cell phone number, resulting in a number of unwanted calls and text messages, FINRA said.
While Betenbaugh’s alleged conduct didn’t involve the sale of securities, the industry-backed regulator sanctioned him for violating a rule that states brokers must act ethically.
Without admitting or denying the allegations, Betenbaugh agreed to pay $7,500 in penalties and serve a three-month suspension from associating with any FINRA-registered firm.