The Securities and Trade Fee has filed civil prices in opposition to SAExploration Holdings, a publicly traded seismic facts acquisition firm centered in Houston, around an alleged multi-yr accounting fraud that falsely inflated the company’s revenue and concealed the theft of thousands and thousands of bucks.
In a criticism filed in the Southern District of New York, the SEC said senior executives engaged in an “elaborate, 4-yr-prolonged fraud.” It names previous chief executive officer and chairman Jeffrey Hastings, previous chief money officer and basic counsel Brent Whiteley, previous CEO and chief functioning officer Brian Beatty, and previous vice president of functions Michael Scott as defendants. It also names the spouses of Hastings and Whiteley, Lori Hastings and Thomas O’Neill, as reduction defendants.
The executives allegedly entered into a sequence of seismic facts acquisition contracts totaling around $a hundred and forty million with a purportedly unrelated Alaska-centered firm that was in actuality controlled by Hastings and Whiteley. The defendants allegedly misappropriated just about $6 million from SAE and employed the funds for a sequence of round-vacation transactions then stole around $6 million for by themselves. Whiteley allegedly misappropriated an extra $four million through a individual fictitious invoice scheme.
The U.S. Attorney’s Place of work for the Southern District of New York declared criminal prices in opposition to Hastings in a parallel action.
Hastings was arrested very last thirty day period in Anchorage, Alaska. A spokesperson for the firm said he was place on administrative leave additional than a yr in the past and then resigned.
“As alleged in our criticism, SAE’s executives designed a multi-faceted fraud that enriched executives at the price of buyers,” Jennifer Leete, an affiliate director in the division of enforcement, said in a assertion. “We will vigorously pursue wrongdoing by people and businesses who have interaction in fraud and mislead buyers.”
The SEC is looking for a permanent injunction in opposition to SAE and executives, civil penalties, disgorgement and business-and-director bars in opposition to the executives.