The Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) has obtained a final judgment against Back to Green Mining, LLC and José Jiménez Cruz in the U.S. District Court of Puerto Rico. The SEC filed a lawsuit on September 21, 2021, accusing Back to Green Mining and its managing members, Jiménez and Manuel Portalatin, of participating in a fraudulent and unregistered offering in a supposed “green” mining venture. On September 23, 2021, the district court entered a consent judgment against Portalatin.
According to the SEC’s complaint, from August 2016 until at least 2020, Back to Green, Jiménez, and Portalatin offered and sold the opportunity to retail investors in Puerto Rico and five U.S. states to share in the profits of a Colombian gold mining operation. The offering, which was not registered with the SEC, was part of a fraudulent scheme that raised approximately $2.7 million. Jiménez and Back to Green allegedly used advertisements to entice investors with high returns, and the defendants provided false materials claiming that all necessary permits for mining in Colombia had been obtained.
Without admitting or denying the allegations, Back to Green and Jiménez agreed to a final judgment. The judgment permanently prohibits them from future violations of various securities laws and rules, including Sections 17(a), 5(a), and 5(c) of the Securities Act of 1933 and Section 10(b) of the Securities Exchange Act of 1934. Jiménez is also permanently barred from participating in unregistered securities offerings. Additionally, Back to Green and Jiménez are required to pay disgorgement of $1,995,538, plus prejudgment interest of $410,728. They must also pay civil penalties of $1,035,909 and $207,183, respectively.
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The Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) is a regulatory agency in the United States that oversees and enforces federal securities laws. It was established in 1934 with the primary goal of protecting investors, maintaining fair and efficient markets, and facilitating capital formation.
The SEC has the authority to regulate various participants in the securities industry, including securities exchanges, brokers, dealers, investment advisers, and mutual funds. It ensures that these entities comply with the laws and regulations designed to promote transparency, integrity, and fairness in the financial markets.
The SEC plays a crucial role in the disclosure of information by companies offering securities to the public. It requires companies to provide accurate and timely financial statements, prospectuses, and other relevant information to investors. This helps investors make informed decisions about investing in these companies.
Additionally, the SEC investigates and takes enforcement actions against individuals and companies that violate securities laws. It has the power to impose penalties, fines, and sanctions on those found guilty of fraudulent activities, insider trading, market manipulation, or other violations.
Overall, the SEC acts as a guardian of the financial markets, ensuring that investors are protected, companies follow regulations, and the markets operate fairly and efficiently.
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