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U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission


Litigation Release No. 17962/ February 3, 2003


Securities and Exchange Commission v. Sunstate FX Inc. et al., Case No. 01-8328-CIV-RYSKAMP (USDC/SD FL)

The Securities and Exchange Commission announced that on January 17, 2003, the United States District Court for the Southern District of Florida entered a Final Judgment against Relief Defendant Joseph J. Italiano, a former sales agent for Defendant Sunstate FX, Inc. The Final Judgment orders him to disgorge $1,370,646.

On April 18, 2001, the Commission initiated this action by filing a Complaint for Injunctive and Other Relief against Sunstate, and three principal officers, Ulrich Garbe, Peggy Patterson and John Hyland. The Commission also filed a Motion for Temporary Restraining Order and Other Emergency Relief, including an asset freeze (TRO Motion). In addition, the Commission requested the appointment of a receiver over Sunstate. The Court granted the TRO Motion, issued a temporary restraining order barring the Defendants from violating the federal securities laws, froze their assets, and appointed a receiver. On May 7, 2001, the Commission filed an emergency motion to amend the Complaint and extend the asset freeze over Relief Defendants, RD Trading Fund, LLC, FX Consultants, LLC, Rosalie Davis, Charles E. Davis, Capital Strategies, LLC, Kirk R. Hanson and Joseph Italiano. The Court also granted that motion. The Court subsequently dismissed the action against Relief Defendants RD Trading Fund, LLC; FX Consultants, LLC, Rosalie Davis; and Charles Davis as part of a settlement agreement with the Commission.

The Amended Complaint alleges that Garbe, Patterson and Hyland, violated the registration and antifraud provisions of the federal securities laws by masterminding a scheme to bilk investors out of $54 million. According to the Amended Complaint, Sunstate claimed it would trade the money on foreign currency markets to make a profit for investors. In reality, the Defendants traded only a fraction of the $54 million. Instead, they used the bulk of the money to fund their extravagant lifestyles and pay exorbitant commissions to their sales agents. The Amended Complaint alleges that Italiano received investor funds from Sunstate for his role in selling the fraudulent investment.

See also, Litigation Releases No. 16981 (May 1, 2001) and No. 16942 (January 21, 2003).


Modified: 02/03/2003