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Former SunTrust advisor suspended over yet another alleged six-figure customer loan

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FINRA has suspended a former SunTrust Bank advisor for three months for allegedly borrowing $528,000 from a customer without the bank's knowledge and approval, according to the rep's recent settlement with the regulator.

Phillip Andrew Johnson borrowed the funds between June 2010 to August 2010 and made inaccurate statements on SunTrust's compliance questionnaires regarding the money he borrowed, the regulator claimed.
Both FINRA and SunTrust prohibit registered reps from borrowing or lending money to customers without the prior written approval of their employer.

Johnson's three-month suspension, which started Tuesday, ends on June 4. He was also fined $5,000 for his alleged misconduct.

It's not the first time Johnson has been suspended for allegedly borrowing customer money. In October 2015, he was suspended for three months for reportedly borrowing $322,000 from a SunTrust customer again without the firm's written approval.

Johnson could not be reached for comment. His attorney, Gregg Breitbart of Florida law firm Kaufman Dolowich Voluck, did not respond to an email message.

Johnson agreed to FINRA's sanctions without admitting or denying the regulator's findings.

Johnson worked for SunTrust Investment Services from February 2003 to April 2015, when he was permitted to resign for allegedly entering into a loan agreement with a customer without authorization, according to BrokerCheck records. He subsequently worked for D.H. Hill Securities and D.H. Hill Advisors in Texas.

Hugh Suhr, a spokesman for SunTrust, declined to comment on Johnson's suspension.

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