Skip to main content

As InterOil tumbles, actor Shia LaBeouf and John Thomas Financial CEO Thomas Belesis have egg on their faces

Updated 10/03/11

Today, shares of InterOil Corporation (NYSE: IOC) tumbled down $9.27 per share to close at $45.82 per share, a drop of 16.83% in market value. The stock lost over $300 million in market value in a single day!

Back on March 24, 2010, InterOil shares closed at $67.95 per share. At that time, actor Shia Labeouf and John Thomas Financial CEO Thomas Belesis were busy hyping InterOil shares to investors. Shia LaBeouf trained at John Thomas Financial to study for his role in the motion picture "Wall Street 2: Money Never Sleeps." LaBeouf claimed that he turned an initial investment of $20,000 into $489,000 by trading various securities while training for his role in the movie.

A day later, on March 25, 2010, Kaja Whitehouse from the New York Post reported:

After preparing for his turn as a hedge-fund trader by visiting trading floors of small brokerage houses, LaBeouf in the April issue of GQ talked up the stock of an oil and natural gas exploration company that has yet to produce any of either. 
"IOC's momentum is major, and it will surprise to the upside," LaBeouf said in a text message to the GQ article's author, Adam Sachs, using the trader lingo he apparently picked up while prepping for the film.
The 23-year-old star of the "Transformers" franchise was referring to InterOil, a Canadian firm with the New York Stock Exchange ticker symbol IOC that says it's searching for natural gas and oil in Papua New Guinea. 
However, after seven years of exploration and drilling, InterOil has yet to produce any proven commercial oil or gas reserves. 
Nevertheless, InterOil's stock is up an astounding 385 percent since the start of 2009 -- a feat critics attribute to InterOil's flurry of uplifting press releases about its drilling and exploration plans. [Emphasis added.]

On April 21, 2010, Independent Film Corporation (IFC) posted a videotape on Youtube showing John Thomas Financial CEO Thomas Belesis shouting to his brokers, "InterOil is at $67, hopefully going to $85!"



Thomas Belesis sounds like he's running what's known as a boiler room operation. He did not want anyone to see that video of him pumping InterOil and filed a lawsuit seeking to take down that video against Independent Film Corporation and Honest Engine Inc.

On September 7, 2011, the Financial Industry Regulatory Authority (FINRA) fined John Thomas Financial $275,000 for overcharging its customers.

With InterOil closing at $45.82 per share today, actor Shia Labeouf and John Thomas Financial CEO Thomas Belesis have egg on their faces.

Recommended reading

White Collar Fraud - Can Shia LaBeouf Help Shed Light on a Stock Market Manipulation Scheme Involving InterOil and John Thomas Financial? by Sam E. Antar

Financial Investigator - AMBER Ready: The Moonlighting Cop, The Wanna Be Mogul and The Killer App That Wasn’t by Roddy Boyd

Written by,

Sam E. Antar


Disclosure

I am a convicted felon and a former CPA. As the criminal CFO of Crazy Eddie, I helped my cousin Eddie Antar and other members of his family mastermind one of the largest securities frauds uncovered during the 1980's. I committed my crimes in cold-blood for fun and profit, and simply because I could.

If it weren't for the heroic efforts of the FBI, SEC, Postal Inspector's Office, US Attorney's Office, and class action plaintiff's lawyers who investigated, prosecuted, and sued me, I would still be the criminal CFO of Crazy Eddie today.

There is a saying, "It takes one to know one." Today, I work very closely with the FBI, IRS, SEC, Justice Department, and other federal and state law enforcement agencies in training them to identify and catch white-collar criminals. Often, I refer cases to them as an independent whistleblower. In addition, I teach about white-collar crime for government entities, professional organizations, businesses, and colleges and universities.

I do not seek or want forgiveness for my vicious crimes from my victims. I plan on frying in hell with other white-collar criminals for a very long time. My past sins are unforgivable.

I do not have any position in InterOil securities.

Comments

Popular Posts

Did a Clever SEC Bait Goldman Sachs into Compounding Its Legal Problems With the "Kiss of Death" Message?

Updated: At 3:48 AM ET 04/20/2010 on bottom

The Kiss of Death

In filing its lawsuit against Goldman Sachs (NYSE: GS) on a Friday, the Securities and Exchange Commission sent what I call the "kiss of death" message to the embattled company. In other words, the SEC wanted to stick it to Goldman Sachs and Fabrice Tourre, the Executive Director of Goldman Sachs International, who is also a defendant in the complaint. While the SEC as a practice does inform target companies and individuals of an impending enforcement action, it does not always tell them exactly when such an action will be filed.

Apparently, the SEC filed its lawsuit without giving Goldman Sachs the heads up that it was planning to file it that day. Business Insider observed that Goldman Sachs was clearly unprepared to respond to the complaint as news of the lawsuit dominated the headlines all day. Goldman issued a short denial around noon and issued an extensive denial late in the afternoon, after most people had …

Overstock.com CEO Patrick Byrne Sleeps With a Gun

Suggested Reading: Overstock.com Hatchet Man Judd Bagley's Downward Spiral: Junkie, Confessed Criminal, Admitted Adulterer by Sam Antar (here), and Closing the File on a Criminal and Junkie Named Judd Bagley by Gary Weiss (here)

In numerous blog posts in the past, and in widespread media coverage, evidence has accumulated for years that Overstock.com CEO (NASDAQ: OSTK) Patrick Byrne has shown signs of being mentally unbalanced and paranoid.

Byrne has blamed his company's financial woes on an unnamed "Sith Lord." He hired paid goons to stalk his real and imagined adversaries and to write lengthy conspiracy theories on the Internet. Byrne has close ties with Bo Gritz. The Anti-Defamation League lists Bo Gritz as a far-right extremist with “extensive connections to both white supremacists and anti-government groups and leaders.”

Patrick Byrne's infamous temper tantrums when he doesn’t get want he wants are well documented too. He made obscene and misogynistic commen…

Nature's Sunshine Products, Willbros Group, Cal Dive International, and BSQUARE Violate S.E.C. Rules on Calculating EBITDA

Nature’s Sunshine Products (NASDAQ: NATR), Willbros Group (NYSE: WG), Cal Dive International (NYSE: DVR), and BSQUARE (NASDAQ: BSQR) have recently issued earnings reports which include a calculation of EBITDA (earnings before interest, taxes, depreciation, and amortization) that apparently does not comply with Securities and Exchange Commission interpretations for Regulation G governing such non-GAAP financial measures. In each case, their erroneous EBITDA calculations have enabled them to significantly distort their financial performance by erroneously reporting a positive EBITDA, when they should have reported a negative EBITDA in the latest quarter.

How EBITDA is supposed to be calculated under Regulation G

According to the S.E.C. Compliance & Disclosure Interpretations, EBITDA is defined under Regulation G as net income (not operating income) before net interest, taxes, depreciation, and amortization. See below:

Question 103.01Question: Exchange Act Release No. 47226 describes E…