U.S. SECURITIES AND EXCHANGE COMMISSION
Litigation Release No. 23945 / September 27, 2017
Securities and Exchange Commission v. Eric Pulier, Civil Action No. 2:17-cv-07124 (C.D. Cal. filed Sept. 27, 2017)
Former IT Executive Charged With Defrauding Company in Stockholder Scheme
The Securities and Exchange Commission today charged a former IT executive at Computer Sciences Corporation and co-founder of ServiceMesh, Inc., a Santa Monica, California cloud-computing company, with masterminding a scheme to defraud CSC of $98 million in connection with CSC’s November 2013 acquisition of SMI.
The SEC alleges that Eric Pulier bribed the former Executive Vice President of Information Technology at the Commonwealth Bank of Australia (CBA) and another former CBA executive to have CBA enter into contracts with CSC so that SMI could receive an earn-out payment from CSC as part of the acquisition. Pulier allegedly needed the CBA contracts to meet a $20 million revenue threshold before a certain date that was required for SMI to earn the additional $98 million earn-out payment.
The SEC’s complaint further alleges that Pulier, a majority shareholder of SMI, received over $30 million of the additional $98 million earn-out payment, and funneled over $2.5 million of that amount in kickbacks to Keith Hunter, the former EVP of CBA and the other former CBA executive through a purported nonprofit organization. The SEC previously charged Hunter with participating in Pulier’s alleged scheme to defraud CSC.
The SEC’s complaint charges Pulier with violating Section 17(a) of the Securities Act of 1933 and Sections 10(b) and 13(b)(5) of the Securities Exchange Act of 1934 and Rules 10b-5, 13b2-1 and 13b2-2 thereunder. The SEC seeks a permanent injunction, disgorgement of ill-gotten gains plus interest, penalties, and an officer and director bar.
In a parallel action, the U.S. Attorney’s Office for the Central District of California today announced related criminal charges against Pulier.
The SEC’s investigation has been conducted by Catherine W. Brilliant, and the case has been supervised by Ansu N. Banerjee. John Bulgozdy will serve as trial counsel. The SEC appreciates the assistance of the U.S. Attorney’s Office for the Central District of California, the Federal Bureau of Investigation, and the New South Wales Police Force.