Police Get Tough on Net Postings


Established member
In a move which will send shudders through sections of the online investment community, Kent police have arrested a man in connection with posting false share information on the Internet.

He has not yet been charged, and is on police bail.

The Kent fraud squad and the computer crime unit at Maidstone are seeking to establish the extent of his activities, looking to see whether he was part of group seeking to move share prices by dissemination of false information.

This follows complaints over a forged announcement which appeared on the bulletin board operated by Interactive Investor Internation on November 6.

One user put up what appeared to be a standard official Regulatory News Service announcement suggesting that institutional investor Mercury had sold shares in mining exploration group Minmet.

Minmet's name appeared to have been substituted on a genuine announcement involving another company.

The fake came at a time when the shares had been under attack by bear raiders - people who sell shares hoping to profit by buying them back more cheaply if the price falls.

Selling by Mercury could have been highly damaging to confidence in Minmet.

The Department of Trade and Industry, nominally responsible for prosecuting fraud and market manipulation, displayed little interest when the company complained. The Financial Services Authority paid no attention.

Kent police, however, have been quick to recognise the dangers.

There was vigorous short-selling campaign against Minmet last autumn as the price tumbled from 40p to under 15p, fuelled partly by a barrage of abuse, much of it on iii.
Though the content on Internet bulletin boards is hard to control, this affair remains an embarrassment for Interactive Investor, whose shares have crashed from 150p to 23 p, since the floated a year ago.

Source: Michael Walters - Daily Mail, Feb 24 2001

So watch out you folks that visit other BB's.......there are crooks about, ready to lead you up the garden path.

As for the DTI and SFA..........Toothless Dogs!!!

Interesting article, Michael Walters seems to imply that a) The FSA should have taken action, b) Minmet is regularly under attack of shorters and fraudsters (Walters is a keen bull on Minmet) c) III's profile has been once more damaged (note his remark on the crash of III share's price). For the record, a friend of mine who used to post my articles on the iii mailing list, was cut off from the same list without any warning nor an email of explanation from iii. This was the result of a campaign of some members of the iii mailing list against Charty.
Thank you. And thanks also to all those who have expressed their support towards my postings on different occasions on different sites.
A good warning John.
Allegedly the same person, or people, were posting on this stock on the advfn board too.
I,m sure somebody on the old CI board brought this to our attention at the time,or was that another mining group?
Either way be alert.
It should be recognised that decent traders and investors are defrauded out of large sums of money by such deliberate acts of fraud. We all take risks when we trade shares but when a deliberate act of fraud is involved it is no longer a level playing field. In my view this is organised crime. If the share price was depressed from 40p to 15p the loss involved is massive. Anybody who orchestrates such a crime deserves the consequences and I for one support the action of Kent Police who protect the interests everybody. I do not see how this development can ever have a bearing on the activities of members of this BB. In my view the people who post on this board are of the very highest integrity. The incident you describe is 100 million miles away from this BB and its membership. I acknowledge your thread John as we need to be aware that such activities are taking place to prevent loss to our members.