A former Securities and Exchange Commission enforcement lawyer was convicted for joining a “pump and dump” scheme in which participants touted the stocks of small companies and then sold them for profits.
According to court records and evidence at trial, Phillip Windom Offill Jr. (pictured), an attorney in Dallas and a former SEC trial lawyer in the agency’s Fort Worth, Texas, office, was retained by David Stocker, a Phoenix attorney who pleaded guilty in March 2009 in the Eastern District of Virginia to conspiracy to commit securities fraud. According to the indictment, from approximately March 2004 through October 2004, Offill and Stocker evaded federal securities registration requirements and provided co-conspirators with millions of unregistered and “free-trading” shares of nine companies’ common stock that the co-conspirators could not have otherwise legally obtained. Many of the shares were subsequently sold by co-conspirators to investors in the general public. The Wall Street Journal reports that a jury convicted Offill on one count of conspiracy and nine counts of wire fraud for his role in the scheme.
Federal prosecutors in Virginia said they are seeking $15 million in forfeiture.