The SEC won a freeze on John Babikian’s assets this week. Babikian is a Bugatti-driving 26 year-old from Montreal who operated a “pump-and-dump” scheme using penny-stock websites. He had put out an email list called AwesomePennyStocks to promote a coal company’s stock while simultaneously dumping his own shares. The email messages about this company and thirty-eight others sent over five years assisted in the spike in share prices that raised the combined value of the stocks by as much as $3 billion.
The SEC stated in March that it was freezing Babikian’s assets, which include two houses and proceeds from the sale of a partial interest in a plane, and this week U.S. District Judge Paul Crotty granted a preliminary order sought by the SEC.
This is not the first incident with AwesomePennyStocks. Back in 2012, the value of a prescription-drug distributor that AwesomePennyStocks promoted grew by more than $700 million in two months. The shares, however, collapsed after the messages ceased.
If you or someone you know has lost money as a result of an investment, please contact Richard Frankowski at 888-741-7503 to discuss your potential legal remedies.