Arbitrators Clear Former Merrill Advisor Of Former Partner’s Misconduct

Posted on April 28th, 2022 at 1:23 PM
Arbitrators Clear Former Merrill Advisor Of Former Partner’s Misconduct

From the Desk of Jim Eccleston at Eccleston Law:

A former Kentucky-based Merrill advisor will have his record cleared of an investor complaint pertaining to the conduct of his former partner who was convicted of theft, according to a Financial Industry Regulatory Authority (FINRA) arbitration award. 

Patrick Strehl, who now works at Stifel, Nicolaus & Co. in Louisville, was “not involved in the alleged embezzlement of funds” from an investor’s account, according to the arbitrators who authorized the expungement. Strehl’s former partner, Christopher Hibbard, received an eight-year prison sentence for embezzling funds from several client accounts. 

According to federal prosecutors, Hibbard embezzled at least $4.2 million between 2007 and 2017. The investor initially filed the claim in 2019 alleging breach of contract and fiduciary duty as well as constructive fraud while seeking $2.5 million in damages. According to BrokerCheck, Merrill agreed to a settlement with the investor for $250,000. 

Eccleston Law LLC represents investors and financial advisors nationwide in securities, employment, regulatory and disciplinary matters.


Tags: eccleston law, finra, merrill lynch

Return to Archive



I am so blessed to have you and your dynamic team defending me. Your ethics, forward thinking and strategies are amazing.  You guys are the best group of attorneys in the country that I could hire to handle this complicated case.

Cindy C.


November 28, 2023
Arbitration Mandated for Former Morgan Stanley Advisors' Class Claim on Deferred Compensation

A federal judge in Manhattan has granted Morgan Stanley’s request to transfer a potential class action lawsuit to arbitration.

November 28, 2023
Wells Fargo Under SEC Scrutiny for Cash Sweep Programs

The Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) is investigating Wells Fargo & Company over cash sweep options provided to investment advisory clients.

November 22, 2023
FINRA Alleges $2 Million in Client Losses and $2 Million in Commissions Due to Advisor's Churning

According to a Financial Industry Regulatory Authority (FINRA) complaint, Stewart "Paxton" Ginn excessively traded accounts over two and a half years, resulting in $2.22 million in losses and $2.24 million in commissions for him and his firm.