SEC charges Santa Barbara company with fraud

December 27, 2014

Facebook stockThe Securities and Exchange Commission charged a Santa Barbara based stock promoter last week with fraudulently raising nearly $3.5 million from investors purportedly to purchase Facebook and Twitter shares prior to their initial public offerings (IPOs).

The SEC alleges that instead of purchasing the shares in the secondary market as promised, Efstratios “Elias” Argyropoulos and his firm Prima Capital Group misappropriated investor funds. They used the money primarily for day trading of stocks and options as well as to pay off certain investors who complained when they didn’t receive the promised Facebook or Twitter shares.

Argyropoulos agreed to settle the SEC’s charges and be barred from working for an investment adviser or broker-dealer, and financial penalties will be determined at a later date.

“Argyropoulos capitalized on the high demand for pre-IPO Facebook and Twitter shares to steal investor money and secretly fund his own day trading,” said Michele Wein Layne, Director of the SEC’s Los Angeles Regional Office.

The SEC’s complaint charges Argyropoulos and Prima Capital with violating the antifraud provisions and broker-dealer registration provisions of the Securities Act of 1933 and the Securities Exchange Act of 1934. Argyropoulos and Prima Capital agreed to settle the charges without admitting or denying the allegations, and the settlement is subject to court approval.

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There will be financial penalties!!?? How about some jail time?

Since they are in the Obama’s pocket as fellow leftist travelers, they get a pass.

The Obama administration is bought and paid for by the wall street gangsters, so don’t expect the fox to guard the henhouse brother.

… fellow leftist travelers? WTF?

I can agree that the Obama Administration is deep in the pocket of Wall Street, just as most other previous administrations have been (and believe me, I don’t mean that as any sort of excuse); the problem, as usual, is the money. There is too much money in politics, there is far too much that comes from Wall Street, and because Wall Street is so “invested” in funding political races and issues, they feel that they can break laws with impunity. I would really like to see someone like Elizabeth Warren (yeah, she is a “lefty”, but damn, does she have issues with unregulated Wall Street) turned lose with some real teeth behind her and would she ever be the Sheriff of Wall Street.

I really do not understand your assertion that the Wall Street types are somehow “lefties”; all they are interested in is continuing their reign of supremacy, no matter who is running the halls of Congress and the White House. Wall Street is neither left or right, that is my assertion.

Bobfromslo, I don’t agree with most of your posts but this one is spot on. Well said!!

Thank you SEC for doing some of your job; now, where are the charges against Citibank and other Wall Street banks for insider trading and defrauding their customers …