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Univ. of Toledo College of Law

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Tuesday, December 16, 2008

Court Orders Disgorgement from One Wall St and Other Defendants for Sales of Unregistered Securities

On December 11, 2008 the United States District Court for the Eastern District of New York entered final judgments against defendants One Wall Street, Inc. ("One Wall Street"), Donte C. Jarvis, Willis "Bill" White III, and Cecil Baptiste, also known as John Latorri ("Baptiste") (collectively, the "defendants") and enjoined them from future violations of the registration provisions of Sections 5(a) and 5(c) of the Securities Act of 1933 and of the antifraud provisions of Section 17(a) of the Securities Act and Section 10(b) of the Securities Exchange Act of 1934 and Rule 10b-5 thereunder. The Court ordered each of them to pay disgorgement, prejudgment interest and a civil monetary penalty. In addition the Court entered a final judgment against relief defendant La Shondra Hatter, Jarvis' wife, ordering her to pay disgorgement. Previously, on October 24, 2007, the Court had entered default judgments against each of these parties and reserved ruling on the Commission's motions for disgorgement, prejudgment interest and civil monetary penalties pending the recommendations of Magistrate Judge Arlene Rosario Lindsay for a determination of the amounts of each claim. In entering the final judgments, the Court adopted Judge Lindsay's recommendations, dated September 4, 2008.

The judgments order the disgorgement of the ill-gotten gains obtained by the defendants from at least 64 investors, many of whom were senior citizens, and at least one of whom lost a significant part of his life savings as a result of defendants' fraud. Considering the defendant's significant fraudulent conduct, the Court also imposed third-tier civil penalties on each of them and barred each of them from further violations of the registration and anti-fraud provisions of the federal securities laws.

The Commission's complaint alleged that One Wall Street, Jarvis, White, and Baptiste sold unregistered shares of One Wall Street to investors through numerous oral and written false and misleading statements. These defendants, together with Alan Brown, against whom a final judgment was entered in January 2008, raised at least $1.925 million from the investing public.

Judge Garaufis ordered that: (i) One Wall Street and Jarvis disgorge $1,925,620, together with prejudgment interest of $526,379.03, and pay a civil penalty of $1,925,620; (ii) White disgorge $1,000, together with prejudgment interest of $275.94, and pay a civil penalty of $30,000; and (iii) Baptiste disgorge $198,619.08, together with prejudgment interest of $47,895.44, and pay a civil penalty of $198,619.08. Judge Garaufis further ordered the relief defendant Hatter to disgorge the $166,570.80 she received from Jarvis, together with prejudgment interest of $32,122.07.

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