The Securities and Exchange Commission has barred James A. DeMatteo from the securities industry.

While president and part owner of Cornerstone Equity Advisors, which closed its doors in 2002, DeMatteo, along with another party not named, allegedly stole $126,741 from the company’s mutual funds during a four-month period from November 2001 through February 2002 by inflating invoices from vendors and ordering the funds’ administrator to issue the money to a bank account that DeMatteo controlled, rather than to the vendors directly.

DeMatteo used the excess amount to cover pay raises he had promised employees, office rent, health insurance, car service, meals and credit cards.

The SEC had wanted DeMatteo to pay disgorgement of $111,741, plus interest, but waived the penalty upon seeing DeMatteo’s sworn financial statement that he does not have the funds.

DeMatteo consented to the order without admitting or denying the SEC's findings.

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