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SEC Takes Action Against Laser Company

Photonics Spectra
Jul 1999
The US Securities and Exchange Commission has filed a lawsuit against a manufacturer of 3-D holographic video image projectors in Van Nuys, Calif. According to a statement released May 17, the suit charges Nicholas L. Geranio and his firm, California Laser Co., with securities fraud for the alleged misappropriation of more than $400,000 of investor funds.

The complaint alleges that Geranio used investor funds to finance a motor sports racing team, to pay the mortgage on his home and to buy jewelry for his wife. The suit also says the company told investors that actor James Doohan, who played Scotty on the original Star Trek television series, endorsed the company.

In a prepared statement, the company denied the allegations and said the problems stemmed from accounting errors. Since the SEC action, however, the company has hired a full-time certified public accountant and attorney to review its ledgers and accounting practices. As to the allegations involving Doohan, Geranio said he had a written contract with the actor to promote the company's product line.

A June 18 court date was expected to determine whether California Laser would be allowed to resume stock sales.

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