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U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission


Litigation Release No. 23009 / May 29, 2014

Securities and Exchange Commission v. Richard K. Olive and Susan L. Olive, Civil Action No. 2:13-civ-14047 (S.D. Fla.); Securities and Exchange Commission v. William G. Reeves, Esq., Civ. No. 2:13-cv-14048 (S.D. Fla.)

Husband and Wife Agree to $2 Million Settlement in Florida-Based Charity Fraud Case

The Securities and Exchange Commission today announced that a husband and wife in Florida charged last year with defrauding seniors through a purported charitable organization have agreed to pay more than $2 million and be barred from the securities industry.

The SEC filed its enforcement action in February 2013 against Richard and Susan Olive and their Tallahassee-based entity We The People Inc. At the SEC’s request, the U.S. District Court for the Southern District of Florida subsequently appointed a receiver who has recovered approximately $60 million in investor funds.

The SEC also charged We The People’s former in-house counsel, who entered into a cooperation agreement with the agency. As a result of the significant assistance provided by William Reeves in the case, the SEC has decided not to seek a financial penalty against him.

The settlement, which has been approved by the court, requires Richard Olive to pay $1,054,131 in disgorgement and a $1,054,131 penalty. Susan Olive is required to pay $45,655 in disgorgement and a $150,000 penalty. Richard and Susan Olive consented to a final judgment providing permanent injunctive relief under Sections 5(a), 5(c), and 17(a) of the Securities Act of 1933 and Sections 10(b) and 15(a) of the Securities Exchange Act of 1934 and Rule 10b-5.

In a related administrative proceeding, the Olives agreed to be barred from association with any broker, dealer, investment adviser, municipal securities dealer, municipal advisor, transfer agent, or nationally recognized statistical rating organization or from participating in an offering of penny stock.

The SEC’s investigation was conducted by Michael Cates and Ian Karpel in the Denver Regional Office. The SEC’s litigation against the Olives was led by Dugan Bliss and Nicholas Heinke.



Modified: 05/29/2014