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by Mike Caswell
The U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission has won an order freezing the assets of Charlie Abujudeh, the California man charged for the paid promotion of three companies, including CannaPharmaRx Inc. of Calgary. The order, which includes accounts at Canaccord Genuity Inc. and a law firm in Ontario, allows Mr. Abujudeh to withdraw $13,000 per month for his expenses. (All figures are in U.S. dollars.) He may also use $500,000 to pay his lawyer.
The asset freeze order comes as part of a case in which the SEC claims that Mr. Abujudeh, 48, was behind the fraudulent promotions of CannaPharmaRx and two other stocks between August, 2019, and September, 2020. The SEC says that he acquired control of the companies and then paid for campaigns that included cold-callers and misleading e-mails. He generated $3.3-million selling shares of CannaPharmaRx alone, according to the SEC.
Details of the asset freeze are contained in an order handed down on Tuesday, July 27, in federal court in New York. The order freezes accounts at several institutions, including Wells Fargo Bank and J.P. Morgan Chase. It also applies to an account at Blacktower Financial Management (International) Ltd. in the Cayman Islands and to money Mr. Abujudeh has at Ontario law firm Borden Family Lawyers. (The SEC says that he holds a family trust account at that firm, and has received transfers in the millions of dollars from that account in the past.)
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