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by Mike Caswell
Virginia stock tout Eric Landis has agreed to plead guilty for carrying out a scheme to boost 97 public companies. The government claims that he carried out scores of manipulative trades in stocks that he was paid to promote. The listings included Interactive Multi-Media Auction Corp., an OTC Markets company that Vancouver-area residents Kenneth Telford and Jason McDiarmid were separately fined for manipulating.
Mr. Landis's upcoming guilty plea is set out in a letter that prosecutors filed in federal court in Boston on Wednesday, Dec. 5. The letter states that Mr. Landis has agreed to plead guilty to one count of securities fraud, a charge that carries a maximum term of 20 years. Prosecutors and defence lawyers appear to have settled on a jail term of 33 months, with each side agreeing not to appeal such a sentence. The judge will, of course, be free to impose a different term. Mr. Landis will also forfeit his gains from the scheme, which prosecutors previously calculated to be $3.3-million. (All figures are in U.S. dollars.)
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