U.S. SECURITIES & EXCHANGE COMMISSION
Litigation Release No. 17382 / February 26, 2002
Default Judgment Entered Against Lantern Investments, Ltd., Lipton Holdings, Ltd., and Beaufort Holdings, Ltd.
Securities and Exchange Commission v. Rajiv Vohra, Sean T. Healey, Lantern Investments, Ltd., Lipton Holdings, Ltd., and Beaufort Holdings, Ltd., Civil Action No. 00-7286-Civ-Seitz/Garber (SDFL February 12, 2002)
The Securities and Exchange Commission announced today that the Honorable Patricia A. Seitz, United States District Judge for the Southern District of Florida, entered a default judgment as to defendants Lantern Investments, Ltd. ("Lantern"), Lipton Holdings, Ltd. ("Lipton"), and Beaufort Holdings, Ltd. ("Beaufort"), permanently enjoining them from further violations of Section 17(a) of the Securities Act of 1933 and Section 10(b) of the Securities Exchange Act of 1934 and Rule 10b-5 thereunder. The Court ordered Beaufort to pay disgorgement in the amount of $61,903, plus prejudgment interest of $14,124. The Court ordered Lantern to pay disgorgement in the amount of $57,702, plus prejudgment interest of $12,300. The Court also imposed civil penalties against Beaufort, Lantern and Lipton in the amount of $100,000 each.
On September 5, 2000, the Commission alleged in its Complaint that Rajiv Vohra ("Vohra"), Sean T. Healey, and three Bahamian companies, Lantern, Lipton, and Beaufort used "wash sales" to create the appearance of active trading in the stock of New Directions Manufacturing, Inc., a small furniture manufacturing company. The Complaint alleged that Vohra and Healey also arranged to have a false and misleading research report published on a stock-picker web site, on their own web site, and through unsolicited mass e-mails ("spam"). The research report falsely claimed that New Directions had significantly expanded, that the author of the report was an independent analyst, and that the purported analyst had issued a buy recommendation. Vohra and Healey attempted to conceal their scheme by conducting much of their activity through Canadian brokerage accounts and the Bahamian companies.
For tips on how to avoid Internet "pump-and-dump" stock manipulation schemes, visit http://www.sec.gov/investor/online/pump.htm. For more information about Internet fraud, visit http://www.sec.gov/divisions/enforce/internetenforce.htm. To report suspicious activity involving possible Internet fraud, visit http://www.sec.gov/complaint.shtml.