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by Mike Caswell
Andrew Hackett, the Toronto man convicted in the United States for a 2017 pump-and-dump run through a touting website called TheMoneyStreet, has received nearly four years in jail. Prosecutors claimed that he ran a scheme to boost Arias Intel Corp., a supposed social media listing, though phone rooms and manipulative trades. Unfortunately for Mr. Hackett, one of those included in the scheme was co-operating with the FBI.
Mr. Hackett, 33, received his sentence in an appearance on Thursday afternoon before a federal judge in San Diego. In addition to 46 months in jail, the judge ordered him to serve three years of supervised release and to pay a $200 special assessment. (All figures are in U.S. dollars.) There will be another hearing to determine any restitution that he must pay. On top of the sentence, the judge denied a motion that Mr. Hackett had filed in which he had sought a new trial.
The rulings represent a loss for Mr. Hackett, who claimed that he did not receive a fair trial. He said that the government withheld material that would have been favourable to his defence. In particular, he claimed that prosecutors left out portions of text messages and phone calls captured by an undercover agent that would have helped his case. As Mr. Hackett saw things, full disclosure of those messages and phone calls would have cast doubt on the government's claim that he was an organizer of the scheme.
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