United States Securities and Exchange Commission

SEC Files Subpoena Enforcement Action Against Individual Who Failed to Appear for Testimony

Litigation Release No. 24757 / March 3, 2020

Securities and Exchange Commission v. Michael Staisil, No. 20-Misc.-123 (S.D.N.Y. filed March 2, 2020)

The Securities and Exchange Commission filed a subpoena enforcement action against Michael Staisil of New York, New York, seeking an order directing him to comply with an investigative subpoena for testimony.

According to the SEC's application, filed in U.S. District Court for the Southern District of New York, the SEC's investigation concerns an alleged Ponzi-like scheme that raised over $345 million from over 230 investors across the United States. On September 13, 2018, the SEC filed an emergency action in federal district court in Baltimore, Maryland against Kevin Merrill, Jay Ledford, Cameron Jezierski, and certain entities owned or controlled by Merrill or Ledford to halt the scheme. In its ongoing investigation, the SEC has reason to believe that Staisil may have worked on behalf of Merrill in raising millions of dollars from numerous individual and institutional investors. The SEC is investigating whether Staisil engaged in deceptive or other unlawful conduct in raising money from those investors.

In July 2019, the SEC issued a subpoena to Staisil requiring him to appear for investigative testimony. After Staisil failed to appear for testimony as required, in November 2019, the SEC issued a second testimony subpoena to Staisil, which Staisil also ignored.

The SEC's application seeks an order compelling Staisil to comply fully with the subpoena. The SEC is continuing in its fact-finding investigation and, to date, has not concluded that anyone has violated the law other than the individuals and entities that have previously been charged.