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SEC Charges Two for Facilitating Multi-Million Dollar Offering Fraud

The Securities and Exchange Commission charged Wayne McLean and Joan Powell in connection with a fraudulent scheme to sell purported shares of Eastern Metal Securities.

The SEC previously charged Roger Nils-Karlsson in connection with the EMS scheme that victimized thousands of retail investors worldwide.

According to the SEC’s complaint, from on or about November 2012 to June 2019, Karlsson, using various aliases, orchestrated a fraudulent scheme in which he offered and sold EMS shares, purportedly backed by a “Pre-Funded Reversed Pension Plan” that Karlsson claimed to be the world’s first online investment of its kind and falsely boasted that its investment platform was run by award-winning economists and other professionals from South Africa and Switzerland. Karlsson’s scheme was allegedly facilitated by McLean and Powell. Supposedly, McLean offered and sold EMS securities to investors, including by making solicitations through podcasts that made materially false and misleading statements.

As alleged, Powell collected and forwarded investor money to accounts controlled by Karlsson, and McLean and Powell retained a portion of the investment funds for their own personal use despite claiming that they were performing these functions without remuneration.

The complaint charges McLean and Powell with violating SEC rules. McLean and Powell, without admitting or denying the allegations, consented to bifurcated settlements, agreeing to be permanently enjoined from violations of the charged provisions and to the imposition of an officer-and-director bar, with monetary relief to be determined by the court at a later date. The settlements are subject to court approval.

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