U.S. SECURITIES AND EXCHANGE COMMISSION
Litigation Release No. 23274 / June 2, 2015
Securities and Exchange Commission v. Edmond L. Lonergan and Green Planet Group, Inc., Civil Action No. 0:15-cv-61148-KMW (U.S. District Court for the Southern District of Florida)
The Securities and Exchange Commission announced that on June 1, 2015 it filed a civil injunctive action charging Green Planet Group, Inc., a microcap company based in Scottsdale, Arizona and Edmond L. Lonergan of Scottsdale, Arizona, the company's CEO and president, for orchestrating a market manipulation scheme involving the company's stock.
According to the SEC's complaint filed in the United States District Court for the Southern District of Florida, Green Planet Group and Lonergan engaged in market manipulation fraud in which they made an inducement payment to a stock promoter who would purchase shares of Green Planet Group in the open market ahead of planned press releases to help them manipulate the stock. The SEC alleges that the scheme was designed to generate the appearance of market activity in the company's stock to induce investors to purchase the stock and artificially increase the trading price and volume.
The SEC's complaint alleges that the defendants violated Section 10(b) of the Securities Exchange Act of 1934 and Rules 10b-5(a) and 10b-5(c). The SEC is seeking permanent injunctions and civil money penalties against both defendants, as well as penny stock and officer-and-director bar against Lonergan.