SEC Obtains Final Judgment Against Radio Host Charged in Ticket Resale Investment Scheme
Litigation Release No. 24485 / May 31, 2019
Securities and Exchange Commission v. Craig H. Carton, et al., No. 17-CV-6764 (S.D.N.Y.)
On May 31 , 2019, a federal court judge entered a final judgment against New York-based sports radio personality Craig Carton and five of his companies in an SEC case that charged Carton with operating a multi-million dollar fraudulent scheme involving purported purchases and resales of tickets to popular concerts. Carton and his companies settled with the SEC and collectively agreed to pay $4.7 million in disgorgement and prejudgment interest.
In September 2017, Carton was charged by the SEC, arrested by the FBI, and charged criminally by the U.S. Attorney for the Southern District of New York. In the SEC case, Carton and another New York City man, Joseph Meli, along with six of their companies, were charged with stealing millions of dollars from investors who were allegedly promised their funds would be used for the purchase and resale of concert tickets. Carton was convicted of securities and wire fraud and conspiracy in the parallel criminal case following a federal jury trial in November 2018 and was sentenced in April 2019 to 42 months' imprisonment. He was ordered to pay $4.8 million in restitution and to forfeit $4,590,000. Meli, who was also separately charged by the SEC in January 2017 with fraud for running a Ponzi scheme, settled with the SEC in April 2019 in both its cases against him. He and his companies agreed to pay more than $58 million in disgorgement and prejudgment interest, and to be permanently enjoined from violating antifraud provisions of the federal securities laws. Meli previously pled guilty in the parallel criminal cases and was sentenced to more than six years' imprisonment. He was also ordered to forfeit over $104 million and pay over $56 million in restitution.
The final judgment entered in the SEC's case against Carton and his entities (AdvanceM Ltd., Misoluki, Inc., Misoluki, LLC, Ticket Jones, LLC and Tier One Tickets, LLC) permanently enjoins them from violating the antifraud provisions 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, and orders them to pay disgorgement and prejudgment interest collectively totaling more than $4.7 million. Their payment obligation is deemed satisfied by entry of the restitution order entered against Carton in the parallel criminal case.
The SEC's cases were handled by Dahlia Rin, John McCann, Martin Healey, and Celia Moore of the Boston Regional Office. The SEC appreciates the assistance of the FBI and the U.S. Attorney's Office for the Southern District of New York.