Peter Pocklington, a former owner of the NHL’s Edmonton Oilers, faces securities fraud charges. The Securities and Exchange Commission charged Pocklington, his company, his attorney, his accountant and a trio of brokers last week.
According to the SEC, Pocklington’s lawyer structured the ownership of The Eye Machine to hide Pocklington’s involvement. Pocklington pleaded guilty in 2010 to perjury in federal court. He also paid more than $5 million in restitution to a series of securities fraud charges in multiple states.
From 2014-2017, The Eye Machine, Pocklington’s company, raised more than $14 million in investor funds. The company did not register the offerings and used unregistered brokers to solicit more than 250 investors.
The attorney and Pocklington failed to properly disclosed Pocklington’s involvement with the company. They also did not disclose how investor funds would be used. Pocklington misappropriated more than $600,000 in investor funds. He used the money to pay personal expenses, the expenses of another business venture and legal fees. In addition, the three unregistered brokers collected millions in sales commissions.
According to the SEC complaint, the company’s filings made it impossible for investors to discover Pocklington’s connection to the company. In addition, the SEC had previously barred one of the brokers from acting as or associating with a broker-dealer. The group recruited many investors through a “boiler room” operation located in Florida.
Pocklington may be best known for his ownership of the Edmonton Oilers NHL franchise. Pocklington famously moved to trade NHL superstar Wayne Gretzky to the Los Angeles Kings for two roster players, cash and draft picks just hours after Edmonton won its fourth Stanley Cup in five years. He reportedly authorized the trade to help cover debts related to other businesses. Pocklington moved from Canada to California in 1998, and has been the subject of several federal and state prosecutions related to investment fraud since then.
Los Angeles securities fraud attorney
When you face securities fraud charges, hire an experienced securities fraud attorney like Robert Helfend. Mr. Helfend has more than 3 decades of experience in criminal courtroom defense. He fights aggressively for his clients, and will fight for you.
Contact Robert Helfend or call toll-free at (800) 834-6434, (310) 456-3317, (818) 591-2809 or (805) 273-5611 for an immediate consultation on your Los Angeles County securities fraud case.
Photo Credit: Mark Sebastian, via Flickr.com