- 1 Unveiling the Enigma of a $344 Billion Investment Scheme
- 1.0.1 Unraveling Alternative Investments: Navigating the World of Reg D
- 1.0.2 The Dilemma: Trustworthiness and Obscurity
- 1.0.3 Chasing Shadows: Unanswered Questions and Lack of Clarity
- 1.0.4 Regulatory Oversight: Is the SEC Doing Enough?
- 1.0.5 Unmasking the Falsities: Investigating Mr. Patton’s Companies
- 1.0.6 Discrepancies and Doubts: Fact-Checking the Claims
- 1.0.7 Unveiling the Truth: Scrutinizing Mr. Patton’s Credentials
- 1.0.8 Ties to Crime: Adding Another Layer of Complexity
- 1.0.9 A Call for Transparency and Accountability
- 1.0.10 Share this:
- 1.0.11 Like this:
- 1.0.12 Related
Unveiling the Enigma of a $344 Billion Investment Scheme
For the cost of notarizing a single document—probably $10 or less—you can declare yourself one of the biggest financiers in history.
That’s all it takes to file private investment offerings at the Securities and Exchange Commission under what’s called Regulation D. But as we delve into Form D filings made by a man named Stephon Patton, it appears the SEC won’t stop you. Let’s find out now with Investmentchannel.net now!
Alternative investments, such as stocks and funds that don’t regularly trade in public markets, have become a major trend on Wall Street. However, investors should tread carefully in the market for Reg D investments, which is closer to anarchy than a well-regulated space. In fact, the disclosures in Reg D filings can be utterly untrustworthy, and the SEC doesn’t conduct regular reviews like it does for public company prospectuses.
“As investors, we need to understand that when someone files a Form D, the government isn’t endorsing it,” cautions Christine Chung, a securities-law professor at Albany Law School.
Nor does the government verify the absurdities that may lurk within the disclosures, as exemplified by Mr. Patton’s questionable filings.
The Dilemma: Trustworthiness and Obscurity
According to the disclosed Form D filings since February 2020, four companies supposedly controlled by Stephon Patton have raised a combined total of at least $344 billion investment. Such an astronomical figure would make him one of the greatest financial titans in American history.
SEC disclosure documents also claim that Mr. Patton has collected a staggering $387 million in management fees and other compensation from these four companies over the past three years.
So who is this mogul, and why has no one ever heard of him, despite his remarkable claims of selling a third of a trillion dollars’ worth of stock to wealthy private investors?
One possible reason for his obscurity may lie in Mr. Patton’s checkered past. Over the past 20 years, the 51-year-old has spent significant time in county jails and state prisons in Mississippi and Florida.
Chasing Shadows: Unanswered Questions and Lack of Clarity
Attempting to shed light on this mystery, I reached out to each of Mr. Patton’s four companies, but there was no response. Even my attempts to contact him through email and social media went unanswered.
Finally, I received an email from “Jennifer Grant (ESQ) Senior Secretary (NORTH GULF ENERGY CORPORATION) HQ, Office Dallas (USA),” explaining that Mr. Patton was unavailable due to a family member’s passing. Unfortunately, my follow-up questions received no response, leaving Mr. Patton’s side of the story untold.
While the primary concern with Mr. Patton’s Form D filings may be potentially false disclosures, it remains uncertain if any buyers have ever participated in his offerings. These filings could be an elaborate ruse or a manifestation of a sad delusion.
Regulatory Oversight: Is the SEC Doing Enough?
In light of Mr. Patton’s questionable disclosures, one must question the effectiveness of the SEC as the nation’s primary investment watchdog. It’s perplexing how the SEC failed to notice disclosures that cast doubt on a significant portion of the total purportedly raised in the alternative-investment marketplace.
Disclosure plays a pivotal role in investment regulation, and filing Form D allows individuals to sell securities without the need for full registration. However, the ease with which anyone can file a Form D, without stringent credentials or reviews, raises concerns.
“While the SEC does not routinely verify the accuracy of information in a Form D filing, fake filings have consequences,” notes an SEC spokesman, encouraging individuals to report any suspicious filings.
Unmasking the Falsities: Investigating Mr. Patton’s Companies
Examining the details of Mr. Patton and his alleged companies reveals the depth of this shocking lapse in oversight.
Two of the companies listed in the SEC filings, North Gulf Energy Corp. and Star Oil & Gas Co., claim to be headquartered at 1445 Ross Ave. in Dallas, an esteemed office tower known as Fountain Place. However, Kristal Hollyday, the senior property manager at Fountain Place, confirmed that neither North Gulf Energy nor Star Oil & Gas have offices in the building.
Instead, Mississippi state records show that both companies are incorporated there. North Gulf is based at the same address as a 2,358-sq. ft. house on a gravel road about 13 miles outside Columbia, a town of about 6,000 people in the southern part of the state.
Discrepancies and Doubts: Fact-Checking the Claims
Public records in Mississippi do little to bolster Mr. Patton’s credibility. These records suggest that the address listed in the SEC filings as Mr. Patton’s is, in fact, his family home. The SEC filings indicate an exclusive enclave near Miami, but county property records tell a different story—a 20,000-square-foot waterfront compound purchased by a limited partnership in 2017 for $43.7 million.
Moreover, Star Oil & Gas’s extravagant claims of owning or leasing vast tracts of land for oil fields and timberland, along with operating refineries and offshore drilling platforms, have no records to back them up. Neither the U.S. Bureau of Ocean Energy Management nor the Bureau of Safety and Environmental Enforcement can confirm Star Oil & Gas’s activities in the Gulf of Mexico. State offshore-drilling regulators in Alabama, Louisiana, Mississippi, and Texas have no information on the company either.
Unveiling the Truth: Scrutinizing Mr. Patton’s Credentials
Mr. Patton’s LinkedIn profile boasts impressive educational achievements, including a degree in biology from Louisiana State University, a master’s in petroleum engineering, and a doctorate in veterinary sciences from Texas A&M University. He also claims an MBA from Georgetown University and a Ph.D. in agroecology from the University of Tennessee.
However, spokespersons from these esteemed institutions deny any record of Mr. Patton’s attendance or degrees earned.
Ties to Crime: Adding Another Layer of Complexity
Mr. Patton’s criminal record further complicates matters. According to Mississippi prison records, he has been sentenced at least five times in that state for various crimes, including false pretense, receiving stolen property, and grand larceny.
In 2017, he was convicted in Florida for using another person’s driver’s license as identification to purchase a Nissan Altima and a $618,000 boat, resulting in a five-month prison sentence.
According to police affidavits, Mr. Patton fraudulently used a duplicate of his own brother’s driver’s license.
A Call for Transparency and Accountability
Considering the sum of these baffling revelations, the SEC’s oversight lapses and the potential for manipulated filings underscore the importance of thorough research for investors considering alternative investments from unfamiliar companies. Transparency and accountability should remain paramount in the investment landscape to protect both seasoned and novice investors.
In conclusion, it is essential for the SEC and investors alike to be vigilant and conduct due diligence when venturing into the uncharted territories of alternative investments, lest they fall prey to elaborate schemes and fraudulent disclosures.