SECURITIES AND EXCHANGE COMMISSION
Litigation Release No. 16443 / February 17, 2000
Securities and Exchange Commission v. Wellness Universe Corporation, Synpan Corporation, George Charles Pappas, Defendants, Paul George Pappas, Kyriak W. Pappas, Makypa, Brooks Williams, Tobias Weissman, Iris B. Coleman, Joann Cingari, and Louise Fiorenza, Relief Defendants. 00 Civ. 1147 (RMB)(S.D.N.Y.)
The Commission announced today that on February 16, 2000, the United States District Court for the Southern District of New York ordered that defendants George Pappas, Wellness Universe Corporation ("Wellness"), and Synpan Corporation ("Synpan") be temporarily restrained in connection with a scheme to artificially inflate the value of Wellness Universe Corporation's stock. The Court's Order arises from an Application, filed by the Commission yesterday, seeking that defendants be temporarily restrained and preliminarily enjoined from violating the antifraud provisions of the federal securities laws. Through its Application, the Commission also obtained today certain interim relief from eight individuals and one partnership as relief defendants in connection with defendants' fraud that generated approximately $2.5 million.
The Commission's Application arises from its Complaint, also filed yesterday, which alleges that, since December 1999, George Pappas caused Wellness and Synpan to issue false and misleading press releases, largely over the internet, which boosted the price of Wellness stock from approximately $.10 per share in December 1999 to over $1.00 per share in early February 2000. The Complaint also alleges that, during this time, 3.7 million shares of Wellness stock was sold by members of George Pappas' family and other associates to the public for an aggregate of approximately $2.5 million. Based upon this conduct, the Court's Order temporarily restrains defendants from violating Section 17(a) of the Securities Act of 1933 and Section 10(b) of the Securities Exchange Act of 1934.
The litigation is pending as to all defendants.