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Wednesday, August 20, 2014

SEC MAKES FRAUD CHARGES INVOLVING SMART-PHONE APP TECHNOLOGY

FROM:  U.S. SECURITIES AND EXCHANGE COMMISSION 

Securities and Exchange Commission v. Heidi Ann Gamer, Gamer Economic Systems, LLC, and Gamer Media Partners Corp., Civil Action No. 1:14-cv-02650-ODE (N.D. Ga.)

SEC Charges Colorado Resident with Offering Fraud Involving Smart-Phone App Technology


On August 15, 2014, the Securities and Exchange Commission ("SEC") filed an action in federal court in Atlanta charging a Colorado Springs, Colorado resident and her two companies with running a $771,900 offering fraud targeting investors in various states. Victims of the scheme included, among others, individuals who participated in substance-abuse support programs.

Investors were told that funds raised would be used by the companies to acquire interactive technology licensing rights for products such as smart-phone applications, or "apps," that the companies planned to develop and market. False statements about contracts and licensing deals that did not exist also were used to solicit investors. Throughout the fraud, significant amounts of investor funds were diverted for such non-business expenses as casino gambling, vacation travel, and shopping.
Named in the Complaint are:
  • Heidi Ann Gamer ("Gamer"), 41, a resident of Colorado Springs, Colorado;
     
  • Gamer Economic Systems, LLC ("GES"), a Colorado limited liability company based in Colorado Springs, Colorado for which Gamer served as CEO; and
     
  • Gamer Media Partners Corp. ("GMS"), a Georgia corporation based in Atlanta for which Gamer also served as CEO.
The Complaint alleges:
  • Beginning in 2011, Gamer began soliciting individuals for investments in GES, telling them that funds raised would be used as operating capital. Gamer falsely told prospective investors that GES had secured licensing rights for certain products. After investors provided their funds, Gamer diverted sizeable portions of the monies raised for her personal expenses, including gambling in Las Vegas and a vacation in Mexico.
     
  • In 2012, Gamer moved to Atlanta, where she created GMP and offered and sold GMP shares in exchange for investor funds which she again claimed would be used for company operating expenses. Gamer also told prospective investors that GMP had secured high-dollar contracts with a movie studio, a college and the Atlanta Falcons football team. No such finalized deals or funding existed. Gamer again diverted investor funds for her personal use, including her condominium rent, pet grooming, and to help send an acquaintance to a private California weight-loss resort. Ultimately, Gamer raised from investors approximately $400,500 through GES and $371,400 through GMP, respectively. Among those targeted by Gamer's scheme were friends and acquaintances, some of whom Gamer met through substance-abuse support programs.
The complaint alleges that Gamer, GES and GMP by virtue of their conduct, directly or indirectly, violated Section 17(a) of the Securities Act of 1933 and Section 10(b) of the Securities Exchange Act of 1934 and Rule 10b-5, thereunder, and seeks injunctive relief, disgorgement of ill-gotten gains with pre-judgment interest and penalties against each of the defendants.
The SEC's investigation was conducted by Brian M. Basinger with assistance from Stephen E. Donahue and Robert F. Schroeder in the Atlanta Regional Office. The Commission acknowledges the assistance and cooperation of the Massachusetts Securities Division.