The Securities and Exchange Commission announced that it filed a civil injunctive action against Cort Poyner ("Poyner") and Mohammad Dolah ("Dolah"), alleging that they engaged in a fraudulent broker bribery scheme designed to manipulate the market for the common stock of Resource Group International, Inc. ("Resource Group") and Gold Rock Resources Inc. ("Gold Rock").
The complaint, filed on July 31, 2013 in federal court in Brooklyn, New York, alleges that Poyner, a recidivist securities violator, and Dolah engaged in an undisclosed kickback arrangement with an individual ("Individual A") whom they believed represented a group of registered representatives that solicited customer purchases of stock in exchange for undisclosed kickbacks. Poyner and Dolah promised to pay between 25% - 35% in kickbacks to Individual A and the registered representatives he represented in exchange for the purchase of up to $2 million of Resource Group stock and $1 million in Gold Rock stock through the customers' accounts.
The complaint further alleges that between December 11, 2008 and May 11, 2009, Poyner and Dolah instructed Individual A to purchase 800,000 shares of Resource Group stock for a total of $50,000, and Dolah instructed Individual A to purchase 20,000 shares of Gold Rock stock for a total of $20,400. Thereafter, Poyner and Dolah paid Individual A cash bribes totaling $14,000 for those purchases.
The complaint charges Poyner and Dolah with violating Section 17(a) of the Securities Act of 1933 and Section 10(b) of the Securities Exchange Act of 1934 and Rule 10b-5. The Commission seeks permanent injunctive relief, disgorgement of ill-gotten gains, if any, plus pre-judgment interest, and civil penalties from Poyner and Dolah, a judgment prohibiting Dolah from participating in any offering of penny stock, and an order prohibiting Poyner from acquiring, disposing or promoting any penny stock.
The Commission acknowledges assistance provided by the U.S. Attorney's Office for the Eastern District of New York and the Federal Bureau of Investigation in this matter.