On September 30, 2013, FINRA filed an amended complaint against John Carris Investments LLC (JCI), its founder George Carris and others. In the complaint, FINRA alleges JCI engaged in: stock manipulation, unsuitable self-offerings of securities, operating a securities business without sufficient net capital, use of firm funds to pay the expenses of principal officers at JCI, providing false tax documents, and failing to pay payroll taxes.
JCI is a Wall Street Investment Bank and wholly-owned subsidiary of Invictus Capital, Inc. (Invictus). In 2009, Carris formed JCI. Carris has served as JCI’s CEO, President, and Managing Director of Investment Banking since its inception. Shortly after forming JCI, Carris formed Invictus and transferred complete ownership of JCI to Invictus.
FINRA alleges that from May 1, 2010 through September 30, 2010, JCI’s head trader Jason Barter engaged in manipulative trading of Fibrocell Science, Inc. (Fibrocell), a biotechnology company specializing in skin and tissue rejuvenation. During that period, JCI acted as a placement agent for Fibrocell and sold shares of Fibrocell through unregistered PIPE deals. A PIPE deal is a private investment in public equity, which companies pursue when capital markets cannot provide financing and traditional alternatives do not exist for that issuer.