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by Mike Caswell
A judge in San Diego has sentenced former Toronto broker Andrew McAlpine to six months of house arrest for his part in a $6.6-million pump-and-dump scheme. (All figures are in U.S. dollars.) Prosecutors said that Mr. McAlpine, 59, used offshore accounts to help manipulate a supposed cellphone developer called Argus Worldwide Inc. while he secretly dumped the stock for others. He could have faced several years in jail, but received considerable credit for pleading guilty and helping authorities.
Mr. McAlpine received his sentence in an appearance before Judge Marilyn Huff on Monday, Jan. 30. In addition to the six months of house arrest, the judge ordered Mr. McAlpine to serve three years of supervised release. Mr. McAlpine must also pay restitution, with the judge to determine the amount in a subsequent hearing.
The sentence is the lightest handed down to date in the case. One of Mr. McAlpine's defendants, Washington State stock tout Ongkaruck Sripetch (also known as "King Richards"), received 21 months in jail. Mr. Sripetch operated a website called Stockpalooza.com that was at the centre of the scheme, and pleaded guilty as well.
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