Missouri’s new fraud watchdog comes from company under investigation by state

The man chosen by Missouri Secretary of State Jay Ashcroft to lead the agency that protects consumers from securities fraud is a former executive of a company currently under investigation by the state.

David Minnick served as general counsel and senior vice president of St. Louis-based Stifel Financial Corp. from 2004 until this week, when Ashcroft took over for outgoing Secretary of State Jason Kander.

Now, Minnick is the commissioner of securities, a job that puts him in charge of the division responsible for protecting Missouri investors from fraud and ensuring that companies comply with state securities law.

A spokeswoman for Kander said Stifel is under investigation by the securities division, although she couldn’t provide details because the investigation is ongoing. Since 2010, Stifel has been investigated by the securities division at least three other times.

A spokesman for Ashcroft said Minnick has severed all formal ties with his former company. Ashcroft praised Minnick, saying he brings to the job more than “30 years of experience as a prosecutor, a securities regulatory enforcement attorney, and general counsel for two (New York Stock Exchange) member firms.”

Read more: Kansas City Star

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