Nine Defendants Charged in International Stock Fraud Scam
An indictment was unsealed today charging nine defendants with offenses based on their roles in complex, international stock manipulation and money laundering schemes generating approximately $6.5 million in illicit proceeds.
Assistant Attorney General Leslie R. Caldwell of the Justice Department’s Criminal Division, U.S. Attorney Dana J. Boente of the Eastern District of Virginia and Assistant Director in Charge Andrew G. McCabe of the FBI’s Washington D.C. Field Office made the announcement.
Harold Bailey Gallison II, 57, of Valley Center, California; Anna Hiskey, 42, of Costa Rica; Michael Randles, 47, of Costa Rica; Roger Coleman, 79, of Las Vegas; Carl Kruse Sr., 75, of Miami; Carl Kruse Jr., 50, of Miami; Frank Zangara, 52, of Locust Valley, New York; Mark Dresner, 59, of Dix Hills, New York; and Charles Moeller, 46, of Sea Cliff, New York; were charged in an indictment filed June 24, 2015, and unsealed today in the Eastern District of Virginia.
The indictment charges Gallison, Hiskey, Kruse Jr. and Kruse Sr. with one count of conspiracy to commit wire fraud and one count of securities fraud in connection with a “pump-and-dump” securities manipulation scheme involving the common stock of Warrior Girl Corp., which was quoted on the Over-the-Counter (OTC) market under the ticker symbol WRGL. The indictment also charges Gallison, Hiskey, Zangara, Moeller and Dresner with one count of conspiracy to commit wire fraud and one count of securities fraud in connection with a pump-and-dump securities manipulation scheme involving the common stock of Everock Inc., which was quoted on the OTC market under the ticker symbol EVRN. In addition, the indictment charges Gallison, Randles, Hiskey and Coleman with one count of conspiracy to commit money laundering.
The indictment alleges that the defendants artificially “pumped” or inflated the trading volume and price of the securities by touting business activities and deceptive revenue forecasts, and by engaging in coordinated trading activity to create the appearance of increasing market demand. The defendants then allegedly “dumped” or sold the securities at the inflated prices and laundered the proceeds from their scheme through bank accounts in the United States and overseas.
According to the allegations in the indictment, the scheme was facilitated through an offshore brokerage and money laundering platform controlled by Gallison that went by various names, including Sandias Azucaradas, Moneyline Brokers and Trinity Asset Services (collectively, Moneyline). The defendants allegedly used Moneyline to create nominee accounts in the names of shell companies, and used those accounts to conceal both the true source and ownership of the securities and the flow of funds.
The conspirators also allegedly took elaborate steps to hide their illegal conduct from law enforcement, including the use of proprietary internal chat and telephone systems. In a recorded call from 2010, Gallison told Randles that Moneyline maintained a private internal telephone system that did not go through a U.S. server on which he and Randles could hold “private conversation[s] that the Fed cannot get a wiretap on.” In another conversation with Randles, Gallison noted that Moneyline’s proprietary internal chat system, which did not retain records of chats, was better than an internet service provider because “if the Fed came in with a search warrant, they’d take your computer and it’d have your last ninety days’ worth of Yahoo messengers and Skype chats.”
The charges and allegations contained in the indictment are merely accusations. The defendants are presumed innocent until and unless proven guilty.
The case is being investigated by the FBI’s Washington D.C. Field Office. The Securities and Exchange Commission, the Financial Industry Regulatory Authority and the Criminal Division’s Office of International Affairs also provided significant assistance. The case is being prosecuted by Senior Trial Attorney N. Nathan Dimock of the Criminal Division’s Fraud Section and Assistant U.S. Attorneys James P. Gillis and Zachary Terwilliger of the Eastern District of Virginia.