I was glad to see the announcement that two pump-and-dump penny stock scammers were arrested recently.
Texas Attorney General Greg Abbott’s Special Investigations Unit charged two Texas residents with devising an illegal high-tech scheme to defraud investors out of more than $4.6 million. Both suspects, who were indicted July 3 by a Harris County grand jury, are the subjects of an ongoing investigation by several states and the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC). In addition to the state’s charges, the suspects face securities fraud charges, which were filed today by the SEC.
Darrel Uselton, 40, of Katy, and his uncle, Jack Uselton, 69, of Houston, face organized criminal activity and money laundering charges. According to state and federal investigators, the Useltons reaped millions in illegal profits by promoting shares from at least 13 penny stock companies. The suspects then secretly sold those stocks into an artificially active market they created with manipulative trading schemes, spam e-mail campaigns, direct mailers, and Internet-based promotional activities.
I don’t know if these two were involved in any of the scams that affected me, but as the recipient of the blowback from bot-net blasted spam emails, I think it’s about time that some of these bastards were taken down. It’s just unfortunate that we can’t bring back the stocks and the pillory.