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by Mike Caswell
The U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission has permanently banned former Toronto broker Morrie Tobin and two others for their part in a 2017 manipulation scheme. The SEC said that the men boosted two OTC Markets listings with paid promotional campaigns while secretly selling $3.6-million worth of shares. (All figures are in U.S. dollars.) He and the others then attempted to cover up the fraud with backdated paperwork, the SEC said.
The bans are contained in judgments entered on Friday, April 16, in federal court in Boston. The SEC has obtained an order permanently barring Mr. Tobin from penny stocks and from committing future violations. The ban was part of a consent judgment, in which Mr. Tobin did not dispute the matter. Also banned were two of his associates, Swiss lawyer Matthew Ledvina and Miami lawyer Milan Patel.
For Mr. Tobin, the ban is just one of his penalties for the scheme, as he and the others faced parallel criminal charges in Boston. All three pleaded guilty, with Mr. Tobin receiving one year in a U.S. jail. His sentence would have been much higher were it not for his co-operation with prosecutors on more than one case. The most prominent of those cases saw him being the tipster for the college admissions prosecution that ensnared many celebrities.
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