The public is reminded that an indictment contains only charges and is not evidence of guilt. The defendants are presumed innocent and are entitled to a fair trial at which the government has the burden of proving guilt beyond a reasonable doubt.
Defendants: John Edwards, Jeffrey Turino, Urban Casavant, Nickolaj Vissokovsky, Melissa Spooner, Helen Bagley, Jeffrey Mitchell, Brian Dvorak, Ginger Gutierrez, James Kinney
A false rumor has circulated that confuses the criminal prosecution in the District of Nevada (United States v. John Edwards, et al., 2:09-CR-00132-RLH-RJJ) with a civil suit out of the Central District of California that has now been dismissed (David Anderson, et al., v. Christopher Cox, et al., 8:10 –CV-00031-JVS-MLG). There are many variations of this rumor. However, in short, the Anderson civil case is not related to the Edwards criminal case. In Anderson, the plaintiffs allege that the SEC and other agencies of the U.S. Government conducted a sting operation against “illegitimate brokers, dealers, market makers, hedge funds, and other persons and entities that had engaged in naked short selling of CMKM Diamonds Inc. stock.” Anderson Rev. First Amended Complaint, p. 17, para. 48. Essentially, the Anderson case involved allegations against an entire industry. In contrast, the superseding criminal indictment in the Edwards case charges a more clearly defined group of defendants: insiders at one company (CMKM) and people who enabled them.
Additionally, in the course of investigating and litigating the Edwards criminal case, government personnel in the District of Nevada have not encountered any evidence indicating that a government agency conducted a sting operation against naked short sellers of CMKM stock. Government personnel in the District of Nevada have also not come across any evidence of any settlement fund (much less any settlement fund with trillions of dollars) potentially available to pay possible claims of CMKM shareholders. The criminal investigation in the District of Nevada resulting in the United States v. John Edwards, et al., indictment involved no sting operation.
We hope this statement clarifies the differences between United States v. John Edwards, et al., with the facts alleged in David Anderson, et al., v. Christopher Cox, et al. The public is reminded that defendants are innocent until proven guilty. Thank you.
Scheduled Court Hearings
Status Hearing - September 8, 2015 at 9:00 am
Trial Date - September 15, 2015 at 9:00 am
(John Edwards, Urban Cassavant, and Nickolaj Vissokovsky will not get a court date until they make their initial appearance in Nevada)
On March 24, 2010, the grand jury returned a sealed Second Superseding Indictment which added the following defendants: Jeffrey Turino, Nickolaj Vissokovsky and Jeffrey Mitchell. In addition, several new charges were added, alleging that certain defendants engaged in a conspiracy to conduct an enterprise engaged in a pattern of racketeering activity, a conspiracy to sell unregistered securities and to commit securities fraud and a conspiracy to commit money laundering. On May 6, 2010, the Second Superseding Indictment was unsealed.
The superseding indictment in United States v. Edwards, et al., alleges as follows: the defendants combined and conspired to perpetrate a fraud involving the issuance and sale of CMKM stock over a period of several years. Hundreds of billions of shares of CMKM stock were sold to thousands of investors during that span. Investors in CMKM are invited (but not required) to complete the following questionnaire. The questionnaire solicits information pertaining to this case for purposes of enabling prosecutors to confer with and receive information and opinions from victims of the CMKM scheme. Please note that while the completed questionnaires will not be publicly accessible, relevant information may be disclosed to the court and/or defense counsel in accordance with the Federal Rules of Criminal Procedure and other laws.