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by Mike Caswell
New York stock tout Christopher Castaldo has asked a judge to impose a lenient sentence on him for his part in the Forcefield Energy Inc. scheme. He says that he has overcome a cocaine habit and a drinking problem that included two bottles of vodka each day. He also asks that the judge allow him to remain free so that he will be able to make his child support payments.
Mr. Castaldo was one of several individuals charged for helping a Canadian man, Richard St. Julien, in a scheme that boosted Forcefield Energy to a $7.54 high. (All figures are in U.S. dollars.) Most investors suffered catastrophic losses after the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission halted Forcefield on April 21, 2015, citing a possible manipulation in progress. Mr. Castaldo's role in the manipulation included accepting undisclosed cash and share payments to tout the stock to customers of a newsletter that he ran, the Wall Street Buy Sell Hold. He pleaded guilty to one count of conspiracy to commit securities fraud on March 10, 2017.
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