That crazy Gareth (CAGC)

Although it is hard to find a more qualified CFO for a China reverse-merger company than SBAY‘s James T. Crane (read more about him here and here), but CAGC‘s very own “Gareth” Yau-Sing Tang outshines even the mighty Crane.

After all, when superstar CAGC Audit Chair Gene Michael Bennett is minding the house, only the best will do.

Back in 1999, Gareth and a chap named Jimmy Wah-sing Heung were the two directors of a company called Win’s Prosperity Group. Jimmy, it turns out was pretty busy and needed a guy like Gareth around, because according to criminologist T. Wing Lo, his workload included running the Sun Yee On triad.

Gareth was also Deputy Chairman and CEO at a little construction company called OLS Group that traded in Hong Kong. On April 29, 1999 it changed its name to China Prosperity Holdings (CPIH) which quickly became China Prosperity Intl Holdings, the shares roared upwards in the fall of 1999. And then collapsed. The HK SFC took an interest.

This is from an article dated October 11, 1999 in the South China Morning Post:

The SFC and the stock exchange also requested that China Prosperity detail all the risks involved in its plan to acquire a 33 per cent interest in an interactive multi-media and Internet service project from businessman Heung Wah-sing. The project – Century Vision Network – was carried out by Win’s Prosperity Group (WPG), which is controlled by Mr Heung and China Prosperity’s executive director Gareth Tang Yau-sing.

That SFC interest turned into a very big scandal in Hong Kong over the China Prosperity pump and dump of late 1999. Read about it here. Turns out it was so big, and the people involved were so shady that a very compelling account was published in the British Journal of Criminology, Vol 50, Issue 5, pp 851-872. Check that out here, and in these great articles by Isaac Silberman here and here.

Let me repeat myself, read that journal article. Read more about Jimmy Heung, and read about the Triad founded by his father Heung Chin, the Sun Yee On. Read Fredric Dannen’s fabulous articles in The New Republic, about the Triads and the Heung family, here.

Even being busy with Prosper and Win’s, Gareth had enough free time in 2000 to work as the CEO of China Broadband (CBBCF). This is from a press release dated August 25, 2000:

HONG KONG, Aug. 25 /PRNewswire/

ChinaBroadband Limited (Nasdaq: CBBC) today announced that it will change its corporate name and Nasdaq trading symbol to avoid confusion with a Canadian company with a similar name that is traded over the counter on the “pink sheets.”

Gareth Tang, chief executive officer, said, “While we have never conducted business in the United States under the ChinaBroadband name, and we also do not believe the Canadian company’s U.S. trademark rights are relevant to our non-U.S. business areas, we nevertheless recognize the confusion that the name has caused in the financial markets.”

China Broadband soon changed its name to China Convergent Corp (CVNGF and CBC in Australia). The HK SFC also came down on CBBCF/CVNGF for its role in the pump and dump, read about it here.

From 2003 to 2005 this fine executive was Chairman and CFO of China Cable and Communications (CCCI), where he remains Chairman today. CCCI currently trades for a 1/2 cent per share.

In October 2003 he also joined the advisory board of Atlas Mining (ALMI nka AMNL). From a company press release:

OSBURN, Idaho–(BUSINESS WIRE)–Oct. 23, 2003 Atlas Mining Company (OTCBB:ALMI) is pleased to announce that Gareth Tang has joined its Advisory Board. Tang is currently the chairman and CFO of China Cable Communications, the first American company to own and operate a cable television network in China. Tang brings substantial experience and extensive contacts within the Chinese business community. He joins two highly respected names in halloysite research, Dr. Paul Adler and Dr. Ron Price, who joined the Advisory Board upon its formation last month.

The SEC did not think too highly of Atlas Mining during Gareth’s time there. On December 22 2009, the SEC finally came down on Atlas Mining, a fraud that occurred while Gareth was busy “advising” the company.

The SEC’s complaint, filed in federal district court in Idaho, alleges that, from 2002 to 2005, Jacobson caused Osburn, Idaho-based Atlas Mining  to sell millions of shares of stock to the public while evading the disclosure and registration requirements of the federal securities laws. Among  other things, the SEC alleges that Jacobson issued stock to family members and companies he controlled, who then resold the stock to the public and funneled the money back to the company. Similarly, the SEC alleges that when a 2003 public offering failed to raise sufficient funds before  expiring, Jacobson unlawfully “parked” nearly 10 million shares with various friends, family members and affiliates so they could be sold at a  later date. According to the SEC, these improprieties allowed Atlas Mining to raise financing without providing complete and timely information  to investors as required by law.

Read the whole complaint here.

Since October 2008, Gareth has been CFO at CAGC. Here is his bio from CAGC’s 10-K:

Yau-Sing Tang.  Mr. Tang has been our Chief Financial Officer and Controller since October 22, 2008.  Prior to that from April 2008 to September 2008, Mr. Tang was the director of AGCA CPA Limited, a CPA firm in Hong Kong.  From August 2006 to March 2008, Mr. Tang served as financial controller of Carpenter Tan Holdings Ltd., a company listed on The Stock Exchange of Hong Kong Limited.  Prior to that, he was the founder and managing director of AGCA CPA, Limited from January 2006 to July 2006.  From April 2003 to December 2005, he was executive director and chief financial officer of China Cable & Communication, Inc., which is quoted on the Pink Sheets under the symbol CCCI.PK. Mr. Tang received his Bachelor of Social Sciences (Honors) degree from the University of Hong Kong in 1986. He is a fellow of the Association of Chartered Certified Accountants in the U.K. and the Hong Kong Institute of Certified Public Accountants. He is also a member of the Institute of Chartered Accountants in England and Wales and the Taxation Institute of Hong Kong.

Anything missing there that an investor might consider material? His time at China Prosperity/Prosper eVision? Atlas? CVNGF? His connections to organized crime?

Gareth is also a director at China North East Petroleum (NEP fka CNEH fka DHCO fka DHCP), a curious Chinese reverse-merger formerly known as Draco Holdings. Draco, a Utah based outfit, was used to spin out another shell, Jump’n Jax (JNJX nka CUTC). NEP had one of the strangest trading halts your author has ever seen in the summer of 2010. NEP is headquartered at 445 Park Avenue, New York, New York 10022, a strange place for a Chinese oil company. Even stranger is that NEP may be the only oil company that has had declining revenues in each one of the last three reported quarters (28.9mm, 27.7mm, 20mm).

Your author is sure that Gareth is a lovely, charming, man, and a wonderful CFO. The shareholders of China Prosperity/Prosperity eVision, CCCI, and the delisted CVNGF would certainly agree.

With all the red flags flying over CAGC, you could be forgiven for mistaking their factory in Anhui for Communist Party HQ!

The content contained in this blog represents only the opinions of the author. The author may hold either long or short positions in securities of various companies discussed in the blog. This commentary in no way constitutes investment advice, and should never be relied on in making an investment decision, ever. This blog is not a solicitation of business: all inquiries will be ignored. The content herein is intended solely for the entertainment of the reader, and the author.
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