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Former Edmonton Oilers owner Peter Pocklington charged with fraud

Former Edmonton Oilers owner Peter Pocklington charged with fraud
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Peter Pocklington, of Canada, the former owner of the Edmonton Oilers NHL hockey team, arrives at U.S. District Court for sentencing on perjury charges, in Riverside, Calif., on Oct. 27, 2010.

A former owner of the Edmonton Oilers is being accused by the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) of defrauding investors.

In a , the SEC said Peter Pocklington and his medical device company have been charged with fraud.

The SEC alleges Pocklington and his attorney, Lantson E. Eldred, set up ownership of The Eye Machine in such a way as to hide Pocklington’s role.

“In the offerings, Pocklington, Eldred and The Eye Machine allegedly failed to disclose Pocklington’s checkered history and involvement, and misrepresented how investor funds would be spent,” the news release said, also alleging Pocklington “misappropriated” more than $600,000 of investors’ money for personal use, including to fund his gold mining companies and to pay his personal legal and credit card bills.

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“Investors should know when a recidivist plays a central role in a company’s operations and offerings,” said Michele W. Layne, director of the SEC’s Los Angeles Regional Office. “Investors should research the background of anyone offering an investment, but they can only do this if the offering accurately and adequately discloses the individuals involved.”

The SEC also alleges The Eye Machine paid millions of dollars in “undisclosed and excessive sales commissions” to people who acted as unregistered brokers for the company.

The SEC’s complaint was filed in federal court in California and charges Pocklington, Eldred and The Eye Machine with violating anti-fraud and securities registration provisions of U.S. federal securities laws.

Other people and entities, including The Eye Machine’s in-house accountant, have also been charged with securities fraud violations and securities registration violations in connection with the investigation.

“The complaint seeks injunctive relief, disgorgement and interest, and penalties,” the SEC said.

Pocklington is known for being the owner of the Edmonton Oilers during their heyday in the 1980s.

Pocklington brought Wayne Gretzky to the Oilers in the 1970s before eventually trading him to the Los Angeles Kings.
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