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Two plead guilty in $147M pump-and-dump scheme.

Byline: Adina Genn

Two Long Islanders pleaded guilty Wednesday in federal court in Central Islip in what officials say was a scheme to manipulate $147 million in stocks, which were sold to elderly investors at artificially inflated prices using high-pressure tactics.

Ronald Hardy of Port Jefferson and McArthur Jean, also known as "John McArthur" of Dix Hills, pleaded guilty to conspiracy to commit securities fraud, conspiracy to commit wire fraud, conspiracy to commit money laundering and five counts of securities fraud, according to U.S. Attorney for the Eastern District of New York Richard Donoghue.

Hardy was a manager at My Street Research, a Melville-based organization that described itself as providing "unbiased stock research" and "top notch, detailed unbiased research."

Jean, a cold-caller there, pleaded guilty to one count of conspiracy to commit securities fraud and agreed to forfeit more than $110,000, officials said.

Prosecutors described the organization as a "boiler room" that relied on high-pressure sales tactics to inflate prices of shares which they or co-conspirators owned in a pump-and-dump operation pumping up prices, then dumping stock on clients.

Hardy faces a maximum of 20 years' imprisonment on the top count of conviction, officials said. Jean faces a maximum of five years' imprisonment.

Hardy and Jean are among 16 defendants charged in this case, and the ninth and tenth defendants, respectively, to plead guilty, officials said.

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Publication:Long Island Business News
Date:Aug 22, 2018
Words:236
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