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CO2 Tech's Curshen asks for new trial

2012-02-22 15:09 ET - Street Wire

Also Street Wire (U-*SEC) U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission

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by Mike Caswell

Recidivist securities violator Jonathan Curshen is seeking an acquittal or a new trial after he was convicted on conspiracy charges stemming from the CO2 Tech Ltd. pump-and-dump. In a motion filed Tuesday, Feb. 21, he claims that the government failed to prove that he and others conspired to dump $7-million worth of CO2 Tech shares while the company purported to have a business relationship with Boeing. (All figures are in U.S. dollars.)

The request comes just weeks after a Miami jury convicted Mr. Curshen, 47, and Nathan Montgomery, 30, for the scheme. Those testifying during their 11-day trial included former Pacific International Securities Inc. broker David Ricci, who worked for Mr. Curshen in Costa Rica and helped him execute wash trades for CO2 Tech. (Mr. Ricci faced similar charges, but he pleaded guilty and co-operated with the government.)

Witnesses were "liars"

Mr. Curshen's request for a new trial is very brief, as it simply seeks to adopt arguments made by Mr. Montgomery in a separate motion on Monday. In that motion, Mr. Montgomery contends that the government unfairly presented evidence to the jury of other pump-and-dumps that had nothing to do with the charges, which were solely for manipulating CO2 Tech. He says this extra evidence had no legitimate value and prejudiced him before the jury. "The minimal (at best) value of any of this testimony was far outweighed by the damage this testimony had to jurors who continuous [sic] heard talk of pump and dumps, manips, and other deals when the evidence should have been focused on the CO2 Tech deal," his motion states.

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