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SEC Charges Rudy Ruettiger and Others in Penny Stock Scheme

The Securities and Exchange Commission announced charges today against Daniel “Rudy” Ruettiger and twelve other individuals who participated in a pump-and-dump scheme involving the stock of Rudy Nutrition, a now defunct Nevada corporation. The SEC’s complaint, filed in the United States District Court for the District of Nevada, alleges that Rudy Ruettiger, who is known for having inspired the motion picture “Rudy,” founded Rudy Nutrition to compete with Gatorade in the sports drink market. The SEC alleges that while Rudy Nutrition produced and sold modest amounts of a sports drink called “Rudy,” with the tagline “Dream Big! Never Quit!,” the company primarily served as a vehicle for a pump-and-dump scheme in 2008. As alleged in the complaint, participants in this scheme made false and misleading statements in company press releases, SEC filings, and promotional materials, and engaged in manipulative trading to artificially inflate the price of Rudy Nutrition stock, while selling unregistered shares to investors. The complaint alleges that the scheme generated more than $11 million in illicit profits.