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by Mike Caswell
The U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission has obtained $6.2-million in sanctions and permanent penny stock bans against three men for their part in a New York boiler room that touted Intelligent Content Enterprises Inc., a former Canadian Securities Exchange listing, and four other stocks. (All figures are in U.S. dollars.) The boiler room operation was part of a pump-and-dump that generated $7.8-million in illegal profits from the sale of Intelligent Content shares alone, according to the SEC. The operation contacted prospective investors, many of them seniors, as many as five or six times a day, the regulator said.
The sanctions are contained in proposed judgments that the SEC filed on Thursday, May 21, in federal court in New York. They apply to three men that were part of the boiler room operation: Anthony Vassallo, Ronald Hardy and Sergio Ramirez. The men have each agreed to a permanent penny stock ban and to disgorge their gains, plus interest. Mr. Vassallo has agreed to pay $3.15-million, while Mr. Hardy must pay $2.76-million and Mr. Ramirez must pay $319,273. The penalties represent negotiated settlements and still must receive approval from the judge.
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