, chairman and chief executive officer of Empire Financial
, is making his leave of absence a permanent one. The Florida broker-dealer announced that Gagne had resigned, Reuters reported
Gagne had been on an unpaid leave of absence starting in May.
Empire disclosed last November that it had uncovered some employees engaged in mutual fund trading abuses.
Also in November, regulators extended their scrutiny to Bear Stearns after discovering that Empire Financial and another broker cleared improper mutual fund trades through the firm.
As of May, the broker said all employees involved in trading abuses had been fired of left of their own accord.
Donald Wojnowski Jr., president of the brokerage firm, was elected to replace Gagne on the firm's board.
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