June 2017-Miami, Florida
A federal grand jury in Miami convicted five individuals for their roles in a boiler room securities fraud scheme that defrauded over 700 victims out of $23 million. Those convicted are:
- Charles K. Topping, 40, of North Bay Village
- Anita Sgarro, 54, Marina Del Rey
- Charles D. Smigrod, 69, Coconut Grove
- Matthew W. Wheeler, 33, Miami
- James W. Long, 60, Miramar
According to the press release from the US Attorney’s Office for the Southern District of Florida, from April 2009-August 2015, the fraudsters used false and fraudulent claims to solicit victims through telephone cold calls to buy shares in Sanomedics International Holdings, a company that sold non-contact infrared thermometers for home health care for dogs.
The sales pitches touted numerous false statements such as: no commissions would be charged, the sales people worked for Sanomedics and that the purchases were safe and secure. Some victims were told that the “Dog Whisperer” was heavily invested in the company.
In addition, several of the defendants used a similar scheme to tout shares of Fun Cool Free (FCF), a company claiming to own a smartphone gaming portfolio with over 500 gaming applications.
Boiler Room–Investopedia defines a boiler room as “A place where high-pressure salespeople use banks of telephones to call lists of potential investors (known as a “sucker lists”) in order to peddle speculative, even fraudulent, securities. A boiler room is called as such because of the high-pressure selling.”
Rex Securities Law , with offices in Boca Raton, FL, and Austin, TX, provides representation to investors nationwide who are seeking recovery of investment losses due to the negligence or fraud of stockbrokers and broker dealers. If you have questions about how your account has been handled, call to speak with an experienced securities attorney.
Most cases handled on a contingent fee basis meaning that you do not pay legal fees unless we are successful.
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