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Actor Part of Alleged Stock Fraud Scheme

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Los Angeles, CALetting the ChiPs fall where they may appears to have taken on new meaning for the former star of a popular 1970s TV series. Larry Wilcox, who portrayed Jon Baker in the motorcycle cop series, is among more than a dozen promoters of penny stocks facing charges from federal regulators alleging stock fraud, the Los Angeles Times reports.

The Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) also alleges stockbroker fraud, given that the schemes "generally involved the payment of kickbacks to purportedly corrupt pension fund managers or stockbrokers, who would use their clients' accounts to purchase the publicly traded stock of microcap issuers controlled or promoted by the individuals and companies charged today.

"What the promoters and insiders did not know was that the people with whom they arranged these illegal transactions were actually undercover FBI agents or confidential sources participating in undercover operations," the SEC said, in comments published in the 10.08.10 issue of the newspaper. The charges were brought October 7th.

The SEC was among the regulators who set up a sting after becoming suspicious of potential stock broker investment fraud, among other allegations. The sting was designed to lure potential stock promoters.

Wilcox, who is now 63, has made various appearances over the years in some of the most well-known and best-loved TV series, including "The Love Boat" and "Fantasy Island," as well as guest spots on "Murder She Wrote'" and "MacGyver." The LA Times reports that Wilcox also had a cameo last year in "30 Rock." However, he is best known for his role, along side actor Erik Estrada, in the popular show "ChiPs," a series showcasing the California Highway Patrol. Estrada portrayed officer Francis "Ponch" Poncherello.

Wilcox co-produced and starred in the TV movie "ChiPs '99."

With regard to the stock fraud allegation, the SEC alleges that Wilcox "perpetrated interrelated kickback schemes with two other penny-stock company executives," one in Florida and one in Calabasas, the SEC alleged. The agency lists Wilcox's company as UC Hub Group Inc. The lawyer representing Wilcox, according to the LA Times, could not be reached for comment.

Fraud, including stock broker investment fraud, can be perpetrated in many different ways. In some cases victims can find resolution through stock broker arbitration with the help of a stock broker fraud lawyer. The SEC, beyond bringing the charges in the alleged scheme, did not reveal how it was planning to proceed in an effort to resolve the matter.

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