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by Mike Caswell
The U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission has filed an administrative action against California-Vancouver accountant Gregory Anton Wahl, citing him and his firm for serial auditing failures in penny stocks. The SEC claims that he and his firm facilitated fraud on the part of public companies by ignoring many red flags. Among other things, he allowed a company to report revenues that belonged to another entity, the SEC says.
The case against Mr. Wahl is set out in an administrative order instituting proceedings that the SEC released on Monday, Dec. 4. The SEC identifies Mr. Wahl, 43, as the co-owner of Anton & Chia LLP, an auditing firm with offices in California and Vancouver. The SEC cites Mr. Wahl and the firm for what it calls "serial violations" with respect to its penny stock business. According to the order, Mr. Wahl and his firm allowed companies to commit various frauds by providing audits of misleading financial statements.
The regulator mentions three specific stocks, each of which has been the subject of separate civil proceedings by the SEC. Among them is a purported provider of long-term health care called Accelera Innovations Inc. The SEC says that Mr. Wahl was the company's auditor during a two-year period when it substantially overstated its revenue. According to the SEC, he allowed the company to treat the revenues of another entity as if they belonged to Accelera.
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