Securities and Exchange Commission v. Glenn Hoppes, United States Energy Corp., TN-KY Development Fund LP, TN-KY Development Fund II LP and TN-KY Development Fund III LP, Civil Action No. 13-CV-00868-SDM-AEP

The Securities and Exchange Commission recently announced it has filed a civil injunctive action against Glenn Hoppes, of Clearwater, Florida, and four companies he controls, United States Energy Corp., TN-KY Development Fund LP, TN-KY Development Fund II LP and TN-KY Development Fund III LP, for fraudulently offering unregistered investments in oil drilling projects.

The SEC’s complaint alleges Hoppes hired Joseph Hilton to sell limited partnership units in three oil drilling projects in 2011 and 2012 and financially supported Hilton’s boiler room despite knowing Hilton was barred from acting as a broker by a 2008 SEC Enforcement Action and was using an alias to avoid association with the prior SEC action.  Through Hilton’s efforts, US Energy raised approximately $2.5 million from approximately 100 investors. The US Energy securities offerings were not registered with the SEC as required under the federal securities laws.

According to the SEC’s complaint, Glenn Hoppes also made misrepresentations to investors in the sale of the units. Hoppes misled investors about US Energy’s oil well assets and omitted information from offering material concerning his personal bankruptcy and the prior SEC action against Hilton. The SEC brought an emergency action against Hilton in 2012 for violations of the antifraud and registration provisions of the federal securities laws in connection with his conduct at US Energy and at a subsequent company he founded.

The SEC’s complaint charges Hoppes, US Energy, TN-KY I, TN-KY II and TN-KY III with violations of Sections 5(a) and (c) and 17(a)(2) of the Securities Act of 1933 and Section 10(b) of the Securities Exchange Act of 1934 and Rule 10b-5(b). The complaint also charges Hoppes and US Energy with violations of 17(a)(1) and (3) of the Securities Act and Exchange Act Rule 10b-5(a) and (c) and with aiding and abetting Hilton’s Exchange Act Section 15(a) violations. The SEC is seeking disgorgement of ill-gotten gains plus prejudgment interest, civil penalties, and permanent injunctions against Hoppes and his entities.

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