Friday, February 03, 2012

Woman accused of selling fake Facebook stock

That was fast. Facebook filed the S-1 paperwork for its IPO on Wednesday, which means in a few months, you'll be able to buy the stock on the New York Stock Exchange or NASDAQ. On Thursday, a Wisconsin woman was charged with theft, accused of selling fake stock in the social networking giant.

Click here for SmartMoney
Marianne Oleson, 46, told acquaintances she obtained $1 million in Facebook stock because her daughter was an acquaintance of Facebook's founder, Mark Zuckerberg, and over a four-month period Oleson managed to sway several people into buying fake stock.

Among those that Oleson is alleged to have swindled is a contractor who did work at her house in September. She paid the contractor for the work with $13,980 worth of fake Facebook stock, according to the complaint. The contractor also paid an addition $10,000 in cash to Oleson for additional stock.

Oleson is also accused of defrauding a 66-year-old man who gave her four checks totaling close to $43,000 in late 2011 to pay for fake Facebook stock, and two other men who were sold a total of $9,000 worth of "stock."

Folks, you can't buy it yet, not as a publicly traded firm, at least. Don't fall for it. This probably isn't the last time someone will try to sell fake Facebook stock now that the IPO has been announced.

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[As folks have been saying since last year, when rumors of a Facebook IPO spiked, SecondMarket, the service that lets you buy private company stock, could sell privately held Facebook shares, but only to "accredited investor," which by SEC definition, are those who earn over $200,000 per year or hold at least $1 million in assets.]

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