Articles Tagged with SEC Enforcement Action Attorney

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The Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) has charged a Massachusetts-based portfolio manager, Kevin J. Amell, with fraud amid allegations that he diverted nearly $2 million from an account over which he had trading authority (the Fund) to his personal brokerage account.  In a parallel action, the U.S. Attorney’s Office for the District of Massachusetts has also filed criminal charges against Mr. Amell.

According to the SEC complaint, Kevin Amell abused his trading authority at least 265 times by pre-arranging the purchase or sale of call options between his personal brokerage account and the Fund’s brokerage accounts.  The complaint alleges that Mr. Amell matched trades wherein he profited by either buying call options at artificially lower prices and selling them shortly thereafter at higher prices to third parties; or by purchasing call options from third parties and selling them shortly thereafter to the Fund at artificially high prices.  In one example, the SEC’s complaint alleges that, in a series of trades involving Amazon securities, Mr. Amell allegedly generated a profit of $23,000 for himself in less than 23 minutes at the Fund’s expense. Continue reading →

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The Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) has filed suit and obtained Final Judgement against The Spangler Group, Inc. (“Spangler Group”) and Mark Spangler, a Seattle, Washington investment adviser who allegedly defrauded clients by secretly investing them in Mr. Spangler’s risky start-up companies. Mr. Spangler also allegedly used client money for his own benefit even though the investments were inconsistent with the investment strategies he had promised his clients and contrary to his clients’ stated investment objectives.

According to the SEC Mr. Spangler and the Spangler Group raised over $56 million for several private funds that Mr. Spangler created and owned. The SEC claims Mr. Spangler advised that the funds would invest in publicly traded securities, but instead he liquidated the private funds positions, and funneled the proceeds primarily to two private companies for which Mr. Spangler served as Chairman and, at times, Chief Executive Officer. Continue reading →

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The Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) recently filed a complaint alleging that during the period of March 2012 through February 2013, Edmond L. Lonergan and the Green Planet Group, Inc. (Green Planet) engaged in a fraudulent market manipulation scheme. According to the SEC, this scheme involved illegal bribes to a corrupt promoter and his buying group to purchase shares of Green Planet in the open market. However, the corrupt promoter working for Mr. Lonergan was actually an informant cooperating with the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI). The SEC alleged that Mr. Lonergan engaged in this scheme in an effort to generate the appearance of market interest, induce public purchases of the company’s stock, artificially increase volume in Green Planet stock and increase the stock’s trading price to sell his own Green Planet stock.

The SEC alleged that Mr. Lonergan and the FBI informant first agreed to engage in a fraudulent Green Planet stock market manipulation on March 30, 2012. Mr. Lonergan allegedly told the informant that he wanted him to cause two to three million shares of buying and increase the stock price from a half a cent to maybe two or three cents. Mr. Lonergan allegedly promised the FBI informant 1 share of stock for every 3 to 5 shares of purchases his group generated in the market place. The SEC further alleged that Mr. Lonergan agreed to arrange for Green Planet to issue timed press releases and provide advance copies to the witness of “front run news” before Green Planet actually issued the releases to the public. Mr. Lonergan then removed the restrictive legend on two stock certificates totaling 1 million restricted shares of Green Planet to allow the shares to be sold in the market place as payment for the informant’s role in the scheme. As part of the sting, the FBI purchased a total of 125,600 shares of Green Planet stock. Continue reading →