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U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission


Litigation Release No. 16973 / April 25 2001

Federal Judge Permanently Enjoins Rajiv Vohra

Securities and Exchange Commission v. Rajiv Vohra, Sean T. Healey, Lantern Investments, Ltd., Lipton Holdings, Ltd., and Beaufort Holdings, Ltd., Civil Action No. 00-7286-Civ-Seitz/Garber (SDFL April 5, 2001)

The Securities and Exchange Commission announced today that the Honorable Patricia A. Seitz, United States District Judge for the Southern District of Florida, entered an Order of Permanent Injunction as to Defendant Rajiv Vohra ("Vohra"), restraining and enjoining him from further violations 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. Vohra consented to the entry of the judgment without admitting or denying any of the allegations of the Commission's complaint. The Court's Order did not resolve the Commission's claims for disgorgement, interest and civil penalties, and stated that the Commission may continue to assert those claims. Litigation is still pending against defendants Lantern Investments, Ltd., Lipton Holdings, Ltd., and Beaufort Holdings, Ltd.

On September 5, 2000, the Commission alleged in its Complaint that defendant Vohra, Sean Healey ("Healey"), and three Bahamian companies, Lantern Investments, Ltd., Lipton Holdings, Ltd., and Beaufort Holdings, Ltd., used "wash sales" to create the appearance of active trading in the stock of New Directions Manufacturing, Inc., a small furniture manufacturing company. The Complaint alleged that Vohra and Healey also arranged to have a false and misleading research report published on a stock-picker web site, on their own web site, and through unsolicited mass e-mails ("spam"). The research report falsely claimed that New Directions had significantly expanded, that the author of the report was an independent analyst, and that the purported analyst had issued a buy recommendation. Vohra and Healey attempted to conceal their scheme by conducting much of their activity through Canadian brokerage accounts and the Bahamian companies.

For tips on how to avoid Internet "pump-and-dump" stock manipulation schemes, visit http://www.sec.gov/investor/online/pump.htm. For more information about Internet fraud, visit http://www.sec.gov/divisions/enforce/internetenforce.htm. To report suspicious activity involving possible Internet fraud, visit http://www.sec.gov/complaint.shtml. For a description of other SEC enforcement actions involved in this Internet Market Manipulation Sweep, visit http://www.sec.gov/news/headlines/intmm.htm


See also: L.R. 16687 (September 6, 2000); and L.R. 16952 (April 4, 2001).