From the Regulators

Vancouver man conspired with others to manipulate the stock of HBP Energy Corp.

By James Langton |

A Canadian stock promoter has pled guilty to U.S. charges against him in connection with a planned "pump-and-dump" scheme that never actually got off the ground, Newark, N.J.-based U.S. Attorney Paul J. Fishman announced on Tuesday.

Mitchell Adam, 47, of Vancouver, pled guilty to charges of conspiracy to commit securities and mail fraud. He is scheduled to be sentenced on Oct. 27.

Adam was arrested back in May at the airport in Houston, and was charged with conspiring with another Vancouver man, Kenneth Stevenson, 55; a New Yorker, Adam Gottbetter, 26; and others, to manipulate the stock of HBP Energy Corp.

Earlier this year, Gottbetter and Stevenson both also pled guilty for their roles in the scheme. Gottbetter was sentenced to 18 months in prison, and Stevenson was sentenced to one year of probation.

See: SEC charges two Canadians with conducting market manipulation schemes

According to the charges, the conspirators took control of a significant portion of HBP stock, and agreed to fraudulently inflate the price with misleading promotional materials and by engaging in manipulative trading. However, the scheme was exposed when they recruited a broker-dealer who claimed to have experience in various manipulative and fraudulent trading strategies, but who was actually cooperating with law enforcement. The scheme was disrupted before the promotion could take place.