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SEC Says Recidivist Securities Dealer Just Won’t Stop

ALEXANDRIA, Va. (CN) - Michael Saquella aka Michael Paloma violated a court order restraining him from securities fraud by "orchestrat(ing) the unlawful public offerings of securities of at least seven companies and the subsequent manipulation of the securities of those companies" in the past four years, the SEC claims in Federal Court.

Operating with co-defendant Lawrence Kaplan, Paloma gained control of seven small companies by fraudulently promising to raise hundreds of thousands of dollars for them, the SEC says. He and Kaplan illegally arranged straw men to buy and sell shares on the Pink Sheets, "including wash sales and matched orders," which inflated the share price, the SEC says. He gave Kaplan hundreds of thousands of shares, pumped prices through "blast fax and spam email" and then both men dumped their shares, the SEC says. Paloma, 47, lives in Mesa, Ariz., Kaplan, 63, in Scottsdale. The SEC claims attorney Kenneth Christison, a member of the California Bar, drafted legal opinion letters for Paloma. The illegally offered and manipulated securities are Courtside Products, and Xtreme Technologies, both of Spokane

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