U.S. SECURITIES AND EXCHANGE COMMISSION
Litigation Release No. 22881 / December 2, 2013
Securities and Exchange Commission v. Edward M. Laborio, Jonathan Fraiman, Matthew K. Lazar, Envit Capital, LLC, Envit Capital Group, Inc., Envit Capital Holdings, Inc., Envit Capital Private Wealth Management, LLC, Envit Capital Multi Strategy Mixed Investment Fund I LP, Aetius Group PLC, and Aetius Group LLC, Civil Action No. 1:12-cv-11489-MBB (District of Massachusetts, Complaint filed August 10, 2012)
Ohio-Based Broker Barred from Penny-Stock Offerings
The Securities and Exchange Commission announced today that on November 27, 2013, the United States District Court in Massachusetts entered judgment against Matthew K. Lazar, of Columbus, Ohio, in a case arising from his alleged participation in a boiler room operated by Edward M. Laborio, of Boston, Massachusetts and Boca Raton, Florida. Lazar consented to the entry of the judgment.
On August 10, 2012, the Commission charged Laborio, Lazar and others with raising up to $5.7 million from more than 150 investors through the fraudulent sale of five unregistered offerings. As to Lazar in particular, the Complaint charged that from October through December 2008, Lazar raised $585,000 from 10 investors through the sale of a PIPE (private investment in a public equity) by misrepresenting that the PIPE guaranteed an annual 8.5% dividend and that it was safe, like a fixed annuity or a certificate of deposit. The Complaint alleged that Laborio hired Lazar in September 2008 to open an Ohio branch office operating under the name Envit Capital Private Wealth Management, LLC. Along with Laborio and Lazar, the Complaint charged Jonathan Fraiman, of Boston, Massachusetts and Lantana, Florida, along with seven entities, most with the name “Envit,” that were owned and controlled by Laborio, including a non-existent hedge fund.
On November 27, 2013, the Court entered a final judgment against Lazar: (i) permanently enjoining him from violating Section 17(a) of the Securities Act of 1933 (Securities Act); Sections 10(b) and 15(a)(1) of the Securities Exchange Act of 1934 (Exchange Act) and Rule 10b-5 thereunder; and Sections 206(1) and 206(2) of the Investment Advisers Act of 1940 (Advisers Act); (ii) barring him for three years from participating in any offering of penny stock; (iii) finding him liable for disgorgement of $16,820.99 and prejudgment interest of $2,917.65, for a total of $19,738.64; and (iv) waiving payment of the disgorgement and prejudgment interest, and not imposing a civil penalty, based upon the representations in Lazar’s sworn statement of financial condition. Lazar agreed to settle the Commission’s charges without admitting or denying the allegations in the Complaint.
The Court previously entered a final judgment by consent against Jonathan Fraiman on October 8, 2013. In related administrative proceedings instituted by the Commission on October 11, 2013, Fraiman consented to be barred from any future association with any broker, dealer, investment adviser, municipal securities dealer, municipal advisor, transfer agent, or nationally recognized statistical rating organization, with the right to reapply after ten years. The Commission’s civil injunctive action against Laborio and the Envit Companies, SEC v Laborio et al., 1:12-cv-11489-MBB (D. Mass., Aug. 10, 2012), is still pending.
In conducting its investigation, the Commission acknowledges assistance from the U.S. Attorney’s Office for the District of Massachusetts, the Federal Bureau of Investigation, the State of Florida Office of Financial Regulation, and the Financial Industry Regulatory Authority (FINRA).
For more information, see Exchange Act Release No. 34-59900 (May 12, 2009) [Order suspending trading in Envit Group securities]; Initial Decision Release No. 385 (August 13, 2009) [Initial decision revoking registration of Envit Group securities]; Exchange Act Release No. 60658 (September 11, 2009) [Notice of final decision revoking registration of Envit Group securities]; Litigation Rel. No. 22444 (August 10, 2012) [Civil Complaint]; Litigation Rel. No. 22836 (October 8, 2013) [Fraiman settlement]; Exchange Act. Release No. 70678 (October 11, 2013) [Fraiman collateral bar].