U.S. SECURITIES AND EXCHANGE COMMISSION
Litigation Release No. 22651 / March 19, 2013
Securities and Exchange Commission v. E-Monee.com, Inc. et al., Civil Action No. 0:13-cv-60637-WJZ (S.D. Fla)
The Securities and Exchange Commission today filed fraud charges against E-Monee.com, Inc. (“E-Monee”), its president, Estuardo Benavides (“Benavides”), and one of its directors and a licensed Florida attorney, Robert B. Cook (“Cook”), for offering shares in E-Monee to investors under the false pretense that the company owned Mexican bonds worth billions of dollars.
The SEC’s complaint, filed in the United States District Court for the Southern District of Florida, charges E-Monee.com, Inc., Estuardo Benavides, 59, of Margate, Florida, and Robert C. Cook, 70, of Tequesta, Florida for fraudulently offering shares in E-Monee from at least January 2010 through May 2011, while claiming, among other things, the company owned Mexican bonds purportedly worth approximately $5 billion, and that E-Monee’s shares would substantially increase in value. The complaint alleges that the Mexican bonds the company owned, in reality, were essentially worthless and there was no valid basis for the claims by Benavides and Cook that E-Monee’s shares would substantially increase in value.
The SEC’s complaint charges E-Monee, Benavides and Cook with violations of Section 17(a)(1) and 17(a)(3) of the Securities Act of 1933. The SEC is seeking permanent injunctions and civil money penalties against all three defendants. The SEC will also seek penny stock bars against Benavides and Cook.
The SEC acknowledges the substantial assistance of the U.S. Secret Service in this investigation.