Litigation Release No. 19890 / October 27, 2006

SEC v. Robert Tommassello, et al., Civil Action No. 3:CV 98-0322 (M.D. Pa.)

Civil Proceedings Resolved as to Robert Tommassello, R.T. & A. Financial Management, Ltd., and Jean Tommassello

The Securities and Exchange Commission ("Commission") announced today the conclusion of its district court proceedings against Robert Tommassello ("R. Tommassello"), R.T. & A. Financial Management, Ltd. ("R.T. & A."), and Jean Tommassello ("J. Tommassello"). On October 20, 2006, the Honorable Thomas I. Vanaskie, United States District Court Judge, ordered that the February 2, 2001 Order of Permanent Judgment previously entered against R. Tommassello and R.T. & A. shall be the Final Judgment and Order against R. Tommassello and R.T. & A. The Court also granted the Commission's motion to withdraw its claims for disgorgement, prejudgment interest, and civil penalties against R. Tommassello and R.T. & A., and to dismiss its claims against relief defendant J. Tommassello, in view of the criminal sanctions entered against R. Tommassello in a related criminal action, and the likelihood that any monetary judgment entered against these defendants would be uncollectible.

In the injunctive action filed in 1998, the Commission alleged that, from November 1995 through early 1998, R. Tommassello engaged in a fraudulent scheme to convert to his personal use funds that he solicited and received from customers for the purpose of purchasing mutual funds and variable annuities. The complaint alleged that R. Tommassello solicited funds through R.T. & A., a company that he owned, which he misrepresented to investors to be a registered investment adviser. The complaint alleged that Tommassello then deposited the invested funds into bank accounts that he and/or his wife controlled.

The Final Judgment and Order permanently enjoins R. Tommassello and R.T. & A. Financial from violating Section 17(a) of the Securities Act of 1933, and Section 10(b) of Securities Exchange Act of 1934 and Rule 10b-5 thereunder.

On April 21, 2005, in a related administrative proceeding, Administrative Law Judge Carol Fox Foelak issued an Order Making Findings and Imposing Sanction by Default on R. Tommassello, barring him from association with any broker or dealer based on the February 2, 2001, Order of Permanent Injunction. In the Matter of Robert A. Tommassello, Admin. Proc. No. 3-11859 (April 21, 2005).