Tags: Teen | Pay | $900 | 000 | for | Web | Gambling

Teen to Pay $900,000 for Web Gambling Fraud

Tuesday, 08 January 2002 12:00 AM

"This case illustrates the commission's commitment to 'real time' enforcement," said Stephen M. Cutler, enforcement director of the Securities and Exchange Commission. "It also demonstrates that just about anyone -- even a 17-year-old high school student -- can mastermind a securities fraud over the Internet."

The SEC alleged in its civil lawsuit that Cole A. Bartiromo, who lives with his parents in Mission Viejo, Calif., defrauded about 1,000 investors of more than $1 million through his "Invest Better 2001" Web site and bulletin board.

The SEC alleged that from Nov. 1 through Dec. 15, Bartiromo raised more than $1 million by selling so-called "guaranteed" and risk-free" investments in which he pooled investors' funds to bet on sporting events. The scheme promised to repay investors between 125 percent to 2,500 percent, the SEC said.

In a settlement with the SEC, Bartiromo agreed to repay $900,000 that agency investigators had located in an account at a Costa Rica casino. He neither admitted to nor denied the SEC's allegations.

Messages left with Bartiromo's attorney, David Bayless, were not returned.

In its suit in the Bartiromo case, the SEC also named "Defendants Jon and Jane Does 1-10," who it described as unknown individuals or groups of people who along with Bartiromo were responsible for the allegedly illegal investment programs.

The SEC first sued in the case on Dec. 13 without naming Bartiromo; the agency said it later discovered his identity.

"During the course of the last few weeks, we followed a trail that unveiled Bartiromo as the perpetrator and located $900,000 of ill-gotten gains," said Wayne M. Carlin, director of the SEC's Northeast Regional Office.

Copyright 2002 by United Press International. All rights reserved.

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This case illustrates the commission's commitment to 'real time' enforcement, said Stephen M. Cutler, enforcement director of the Securities and Exchange Commission. It also demonstrates that just about anyone -- even a 17-year-old high school student -- can mastermind a...
Teen,Pay,$900,000,for,Web,Gambling,Fraud
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2002-00-08
Tuesday, 08 January 2002 12:00 AM
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