Pro-Bowler Samuel Presses $7.8 Million Claim Against Morgan Stanley, Wells
(Updates in eighth graf with comment from Morgan Stanley and corrects Parthemer’s role at the nightclub in the first graf to manager.)
A broker and Miami nightclub manager who cost Morgan Stanley more than $800,000 and Wells Fargo Advisors $1.5 million earlier this year is creating more celebrity-linked headaches for the firms.
Former NFL cornerback Asante Samuel and Mega-Millions lottery winner James Groves jointly filed an arbitration claim for $7.8 million in damages in late July from the brokerage firms for failing to supervise Aaron Parthemer, according to a regulatory filing seen by AdvisorHub.
Parthemer, who left Morgan Stanley in 2011 after two-and-a-half years for an offer from Wells, was barred for life from the securities industry last year for failing to gain approval from his employers for his outside business activities and for taking loans from clients. Wells accepted Parthemer’s resignation in May 2015 after he consented to the Financial Industry Regulatory Authority’s bar.
The latest complaint from Samuel and Groves, who won $168 million in a 2009 Mega-Millions lottery, follows their acceptance of a $1.5 million settlement from Wells earlier this summer for failing to supervise Parthemer.
Samuel, a former New England Patriot who has a tattoo saying “Get Rich To This,” according to the Boston Herald, pressed the earlier claim over an investment Parthemer solicited from him and Groves in a clothing company, said Chase Carlson, a lawyer whose Florida firm represented clients in another Parthemer-related claim against Morgan Stanley. It resulted in an $800,000 award for the clients in May.
The latest arbitration claim involves investments in a now-defunct Club Play Miami nightclub run by Parthemer, Carlson said.
Matthew E. Johnson, a lawyer at Wheeler Trigg O’Donnell in Denver who represents Samuel and Groves, confirmed their arbitration claim but declined further comment. He also is handling claims against Morgan Stanley and Wells Fargo from another group of pro football players alleging supervisory failures leading to investments they made in Global Village Concerns, an “educational” venture called that Parthemer marketed.
A spokeswoman for Morgan Stanley, Christine Jockle, said in an emailed statement that the nightclub was owned by Samuel and “had nothing to do with Morgan Stanley.”
“Samuel owned the South Beach nightclub and eventually the club closed as a result of the realities of the business world and competition in the South Beach club scene,” Jockle wrote. “His late conceived claims that this is somehow related to Morgan Stanley is without merit. FA Parthemer failed to disclose his outside activities to Morgan Stanley.”
A spokeswoman at Wells did not respond to requests for comment.
When Wells agreed in June to the $1.5 million settlement, it noted that it did not admit to any wrongdoing and said it settled to avoid additional arbitration, according to Parthemer’s employment record. Wells has filed an arbitration claim of $2.1 million against Parthemer to compensate it for bonuses he received.
Parthemer, who filed for bankruptcy last November, is not named as a respondent in the latest arbitration complaints, according to James D. Sallah, a lawyer in Boca Raton, Florida, representing Parthemer in the bankruptcy.
In May, an arbitration panel ordered Morgan Stanley to pay $819,300 to former NBA point guard Keyon Dooling and NFL offensive tackle John St. Clair over investments they made in Club Play and GVC.