Phenix City couple indicted on securities violations

benw@ledger-enquirer.comMarch 7, 2014 

A Phenix City couple have been charged with alleged securities violations in a February indictment by a Russell County grand jury, authorities said in a news release.

Jose Torres faces 19 counts, which includes one count of selling securities by an unregistered agent, five charges of selling unregistered securities, nine counts of making an untrue statement, two counts of employing a scheme to defraud, one count of engaging in an act, practice or course which operates as a fraud and one count of theft of property first degree.

Tammy Torres faces one charge of engaging in an act or practice that operates as a fraud or deceit.

Both were arrested Wednesday and held in the Russell County Jail. Bond for Jose Torres was set at $750,000 and Tammy Torres’ bond was $50,000. In the indictments, it is alleged that the man offered and sold unregistered investment contracts for ATM/EPS Inc. to Alabama investors. Both represented that investors’ funds would be placed in automated teller machines to be used as vault cash. The document also states that investors would receive monthly returns on money placed in the ATMs.

Investor funds were used by the two to pay other investors and unrelated personal expenses, the indictments state.

If convicted on a securities registration charge, a person could face a maximum of 10 years in prison and a $15,000 fine per count on the felony. A person could face a maximum of 20 years in prison and a $25,000 fine per count on felony securities fraud and theft charges.

Potential investors are cautioned by the Alabama Securities Commission to thoroughly scrutinize and research any investment opportunity. For information, a potential investor may contact the commission concerning securities broker-dealers, agents, investment advisers, investment adviser representatives, financial planners, registration status of securities or debt management programs, to report suspected fraud or to obtain consumer information.

The indictments were announced by Kenneth E. Davis, district attorney of Russell County and Joseph Borg, director of the Alabama Securities Commission.

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