The Securities and Exchange Commission has charged a California based lawyer, Brian Reiss, with selling fraudulent legal opinion letters through his website. These documents were issued to transfer agents on behalf of holders, to lift restrictions on stocks to be freely traded again.
“Reiss flouted his responsibilities as a gatekeeper in the issuance of stock, and churned out opinion letters to make a quick buck,” said Andrew M. Calamari, Director of the SEC’s New York Regional Office. “Attorneys who act as gatekeepers in our markets have a solemn responsibility to ensure that they provide accurate information to the marketplace.”
Reiss relied on a computer-generated template to create his “opinion”, within minutes without actually analyzing any of the information. The opinion letters were sold on 144Letter.com for $200-$300, with a bulk discount where applicable.
The SEC’s complaint charges Reiss with reckless disregard of power by seeking financial penalties, barring the lawyer from participating in offering any penny stock, and an injunction prohibiting him from providing legal services in connection with an unregistered offer or sale of securities.
Based on his LinkedIn profile picture, his lack of photo shop skills seem to be a good reflection of his lack of morality.