The Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) charged two individuals, an attorney and a law firm business manager yesterday for the illegal sale of blockchain firm, starting to have a blockchain-related business.
Attorney T.J. Jesky and the business manager of his law firm Mark F. DeStefano are supposed to have made about $1.4 million in sales from selling shares in UBI Blockchain Internet, Ltd between 26 December 2017 and 5 January 2018. The SEC then for the time being deferred trading in UBI Blockchain stock regarding concerns that the claims made within the SEC filings were imprecise including “usual and unexplained market activity”.
“This case is a prime example of why the SEC has warned retail investors to be cautious before buying stock in companies that suddenly claim to have a blockchain business,” said Robert A. Cohen, Chief of the SEC Enforcement Division’s Cyber Unit. “This case involved both a trading suspension and people holding restricted shares who attempted to profit from the dramatic price increase with illegal stock sales that violated the registration statement.”
It is claimed that Nevada residents Jesky and DeStefano have received 72,000 restricted shares of UBI Blockchain stock in October 2017 under the agreement that they could sell the shares for $0.7 each according to the registration statement. Yet, the pair is now charged with selling the shares higher than the market prices to make additional profits, with prices ranging from $21.12 to $48.40 during an unusual price increase in UBI Blockchain stock.
The SEC filed a complaint in a New York federal court charging Jesky and DeStefano with violation of the registration provisions of the federal securities laws. The individuals have decided to return $1.4 million, pay $188,682 in charges, and to be subject to permanent injunctions after the case. Yet, for now, they have not pleaded innocent or guilty to the charges that they took part in illegal stock sales.