Our securities and investment litigation team specializes in recovering money lost by investors due to bad advice or misconduct. We have the largest and most experienced fraud litigation group in Utah and have recovered many millions of dollars for our clients.
Mark Pugsley’s practice is focused on whistleblower cases and complex commercial litigation involving financial institutions, including brokerage firms, banks and insurance companies. He has represented victims of investment fraud and unsuitable investment recommendations in civil litigation, FINRA arbitrations, and receivership (clawback) cases for over twenty five years. He has recovered millions of dollars for his clients through arbitrations, civil trials and settlements. He is the chair of the Securities Litigation Group at Ray Quinney & Nebeker and holds active licenses to practice law in Utah and California.
Mr. Pugsley has achieved an AV Preeminent (5.0) rating with Martindale-Hubbell, which is the highest rating awarded to attorneys for professional competence and ethics. Mr. Pugsley has been listed in The Best Lawyers in America Tier 1 in Utah for Securities Law since 2008 and was selected as “Lawyer of the Year” for Litigation-Securities in 2015. Mr. Pugsley was also listed as “Lawyer of the Year” for Securities Regulation in 2013. Mr. Pugsley is listed in Mountain States Super Lawyers in the category of Securities Litigation and was ranked as one of its “Top 100” attorneys in 2012. Benchmark Plaintiff lists Mr. Pugsley as “Highly Recommended” for securities litigation, and he has appeared on Utah Business Magazine’s “Legal Elite” listing in the category of Civil Litigation in every year since the list’s inception in 2004.
Maria Windham is a civil litigator specializing in securities litigation, complex fraud cases, and receiverships. She is experienced in representing investors, whistleblowers, and professional traders to recover investment losses. Highlights of her career including acting as trial counsel in several notable FINRA arbitrations that resulted in multi-million dollar arbitration awards or settlements for investors. The FINRA awards included some of the largest FINRA arbitration awards in Utah. In United States ex rel. Lemmon v. Envirocare, in which Ms. Windham represented false claims act whistleblowers in a precedent-setting Tenth Circuit Court of Appeals case that overturned a lower court’s dismissal of the whistleblower claims.
Ms. Windham continues to maintain an active docket of securities and fraud litigation matters in FINRA arbitration and state and federal courts. She currently represents investors in ongoing litigation over fraud and broker misconduct. In July 2016, she argued a case concerning the interpretation of the Utah Securities Act before the Utah Court of Appeals. In August 2016, the United States Securities and Exchange Commission (“SEC”) filed a pending motion to appoint Ms. Windham as Receiver to assist the Utah Federal District Court in recovering investor funds in a Ponzi scheme case.
Ms. Windham is recognized as a Rising Star in the category of Securities Litigation by Mountain States Super Lawyers (2012-2016). She was also named an Up and Coming Attorney in litigation by Utah Business Magazine (2012-2014). While in law school, Ms. Windham spent a summer as a law clerk with the enforcement division of the Securities and Exchange Commission. Ms. Windham is the Vice Chair of the firm’s Women Lawyers Group.
Mr. Benson is the Chair of the Firm’s White Collar, Corporate Compliance, and Government Investigations Section. His practice focuses primarily on white collar criminal defense and civil litigation.
A former federal prosecutor, Mr. Benson handles nearly every type of federal criminal case and investigation. Mr. Benson represents clients facing government regulatory investigations and enforcement actions by the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC), Federal Trade Commission (FTC), Department of Justice (DOJ) Civil Division, Food and Drug Administration (FDA), Utah Division of Securities, Utah Division of Consumer Protection and others.
Additionally, Mr. Benson concentrates his practice on complex civil litigation. He has represented corporations and individuals in a wide range of civil matters, including breach of contract claims, partnership disputes, securities fraud and federal qui tam actions under the False Claims Act.
Mr. Benson has been included on the list of The Best Lawyers in America© 2020 in Criminal Defense: White Collar. He has also been selected for inclusion in Mountain States Super Lawyers (2013-2019) in the category of Criminal Defense: White Collar and has been voted by his peers throughout the state as one of Utah’s “Legal Elite,” as published in Utah Business Magazine (2014-2019). He is also a regular guest commentator on The Big Show with Spence Checketts and Gordon Monson (1280 The Zone), providing legal analysis on sports industry related matters.