You might want to try to contact the following:
Public Investors Arbitration Bar Association (PIABA)
2415 A Wilcox Drive
Norman, OK 73069
Phone: (888) 621-7484 (toll-free)
Fax: (405) 360-2063
This national bar association limits its membership to lawyers who specialize in representing individual investors in arbitration and other legal actions. Most PIABA members offer a free initial consultation either by phone or in person.
In addition to hiring an attorney to investigate and litigate, you should make a report to the Securities and Exchange Commission:
The information presented here is general in nature and is not intended, nor should be construed, as legal advice. This posting does not create any attorney-client relationship with the author (who is only admitted to practice law in the State of California). For specific advice about your particular situation, consult your own attorney.
I would second Mr. Chen's advice. It sounds like you have already reported it to your State's Department of Financial Services and that they are investigating. I often find that in order to give yourself a better opportunity to recover your money you should consult your own lawyer who can advise you about bringing a civil action independent of the state or federal agency investigation and/or prosecution.
PIABA is the Plaintiff's bar association for attorneys who represented investors. The PIABA website has a find an attorney section and there are a few in the San Diego area. Here is a link to the PIABA "find an attorney" search page.
Cases dealing with unlicensed individuals are often relatively easy to prove but difficult to collect because the individuals were not working for a reputable brokerage firm with deep pockets and insurance. The individuals often do not have insurance of their own that would cover this, and if they do, the insurance typically excludes this type of conduct.
Legal disclaimer: Please be advised that the advice provided does not create any attorney/client relationship; that due to the various state laws that the information provided is a general overview of work comp law, which might not be applicable to you, based upon the laws of your state. We will not file anything on your behalf nor protect any statute of limitations which might arise and recommend that you IMMEDIATELY consult legal counsel for advice.