On February 17, 2021, the Securities and Exchange Commission (“SEC”), represented by Richard R. Best and Richard S. Hong, both attorneys at SEC’s New York regional office, filed a civil enforcement action against Joseph Cimino (“Cimino”) seeking injunctive relief, disgorgement and monetary penalties for knowingly or recklessly making material misrepresentations to investors in Six Degree and misappropriating funds raised from those investors. This case was filed in U.S. District Court in the Southern District of New York with Judge Cathy Seibel presiding.
In its complaint, the SEC alleged that “Cimino solicited investors to purchase membership interests in Six Degree between December 2014 and September 2017, raising approximately $985,000 in total. Cimino personally solicited each of the investors.” The SEC further alleged that “Cimino presented Six Degree as a start-up company that had already successfully raised funds from a number of investors. An investor list that Cimino maintained and gave to investors contained false investor names and dollar amounts, creating the appearance that Six Degree had raised more money than it actually had. Cimino also provided false financial information to Six Degree’s largest investor prior to soliciting a second round of investment from him… As he raised funds from investors, Cimino instead misappropriated most of those funds for personal purposes, such as purchases at grocery stores, department stores, fast food restaurants, and home improvement stores.”
The SEC also alleged that “Throughout the time period, Cimino provided prospective investors with the Operating Agreement, which represented that any payment of compensation to Cimino would require the consent of a majority of the interests of investors. Cimino did not disclose to investors his prior misappropriation or that he intended to use a substantial portion of the money he raised to fund his living expenses without the consent of the majority of investors. In doing so, Cimino knowingly or recklessly engaged in deceptive conduct designed to mislead and steal from Six Degree investors.”
There are two claims for relief laid down by the SEC. The first claim is for the violations of Securities Act Section 17(a) and second claim is for violations of Exchange Act Section 10(b) and Rule 10b-5 thereunder. In each of these claims the SEC alleged that Cimino, directly or indirectly, singly or in concert, in the offer or sale of securities and by the use of the means or instruments of transportation or communication in interstate commerce or the mails, knowingly or recklessly, has employed one or more devices, schemes, or artifices to defraud, or negligently has obtained money or property by means of one or more untrue statements, and/or negligently has engaged in one or more transactions, practices, or courses of business which operated or would operate as a fraud or deceit upon the purchaser.
In its prayer for relief, the SEC has requested the court to pass an order for injunctive relief, disgorgement of all ill-gotten gains he received directly or indirectly, as a result of the alleged violations, with pre-judgment interest thereon and to pay civil monetary penalties under Securities Act Section 20(d) [15 U.S.C. § 77t(d)] and Exchange Act Section 21(d)(3) [15 U.S.C. § 78u(d)(3)].
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Pending - Other Pending
Securities and Exchange Commission
New York, NY 10281
Warwick, NY 10990
Richard R. Best
Attorney at U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission
200 Vesey Street, Ste 400
New York, NY 10281
Richard S. Hong
Attorney at U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission (NY)
200 Vesey Street, Ste. 400
New York, NY 10281
Docket(#6) AFFIDAVIT OF SERVICE of Summons and Complaint. Joseph Cimino served on 3/1/2021, answer due 3/22/2021. Service was accepted by Joseph Cimino, Defendant. Document filed by Securities and Exchange Commission..(Hong, Richard) (Entered: 03/17/2021)Read MoreRead Less
Docket(#5) ELECTRONIC SUMMONS ISSUED as to Joseph Cimino..(jgo) (Entered: 02/18/2021)Read MoreRead Less
DocketCase Designated ECF. (jgo) (Entered: 02/18/2021)Read MoreRead Less
DocketMagistrate Judge Judith C. McCarthy is so designated. Pursuant to 28 U.S.C. Section 636(c) and Fed. R. Civ. P. 73(b)(1) parties are notified that they may consent to proceed before a United States Magistrate Judge. Parties who wish to consent may access the necessary form at the following link: #https://nysd.uscourts.gov/sites/default/files/2018-06/AO-3.pdf. (jgo) (Entered: 02/18/2021)Read MoreRead Less
DocketCASE OPENING INITIAL ASSIGNMENT NOTICE: The above-entitled action is assigned to Judge Cathy Seibel. Please download and review the Individual Practices of the assigned District Judge, located at #https://nysd.uscourts.gov/judges/district-judges. Attorneys are responsible for providing courtesy copies to judges where their Individual Practices require such. Please download and review the ECF Rules and Instructions, located at #https://nysd.uscourts.gov/rules/ecf-related-instructions..(jgo) (Entered: 02/18/2021)Read MoreRead Less
Docket***NOTICE TO ATTORNEY REGARDING CIVIL CASE OPENING STATISTICAL ERROR CORRECTION: Notice to attorney Richard R. Best. The following case opening statistical information was erroneously selected/entered: County code Westchester;. The following correction(s) have been made to your case entry: the County code has been modified to New York;. (jgo) (Entered: 02/18/2021)Read MoreRead Less
Docket(#4) REQUEST FOR ISSUANCE OF SUMMONS as to Joseph Cimino, re: #1 Complaint. Document filed by Securities and Exchange Commission..(Hong, Richard) (Entered: 02/17/2021)Read MoreRead Less
Docket(#3) NOTICE OF APPEARANCE by Richard S. Hong on behalf of Securities and Exchange Commission..(Hong, Richard) (Entered: 02/17/2021)Read MoreRead Less
Docket(#2) CIVIL COVER SHEET filed..(Best, Richard) (Entered: 02/17/2021)Read MoreRead Less
Docket(#1) COMPLAINT against Joseph Cimino. Document filed by Securities and Exchange Commission..(Best, Richard) (Entered: 02/17/2021)Read MoreRead Less
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