The Nichols Hills-based CEO of CanTex Energy Corp. faces a lifetime ban on selling securities in Oklahoma and a $50,000 fine from the Oklahoma Department of Securities for allegedly violating the terms of a previous agreement from the agency.
The Securities Department filed a civil action against Nichols Hills resident Bruce Scambler on Friday, accusing him of breaking the terms of a 2009 deal with state regulators that banned him from selling securities in Oklahoma for five years.
“The department has been brutally silly,” Scambler said Monday. “They should have sent out a warning letter.”
Scambler and one of his previous companies, Merrick Energy Development LLC, was sanctioned by the Securities Department in 2009. The details of the investigation that preceded the sanction were not publicly available.
Scambler also has pending criminal charges in Oklahoma County, records show. He faces a DUI charge and a felony charge of assault with a deadly weapon after he allegedly rammed his F-250 pickup into an off-duty Nichols Hills police officer’s parked, off-duty personal vehicle on Valentine’s Day in 2013.
Scambler has pleaded not guilty to the criminal charges. He declined to comment on the matter.
CanTex has offices in Oklahoma City and Dallas, according to its website. The company, which trades its stock on the over-the-counter market, explores and develops oil and gas fields in North America and also invests in wind power, according to the website.
Scambler said the new enforcement action filed Friday stemmed from a failed merger between Cantex and Oklahoma City-based company Bedford Energy. The merger was canceled in 2010, shortly after the death of Bedford Energy Chairman Harvey Bryant’s daughter, Julie Mitchell, Scambler said. Julie Mitchell, wife of underground gambling kingpin Teddy Mitchell, was found beaten to death inside her home in November 2010 and the murder has never been solved.
Bryant retired shortly after his daughters’ death, Scambler said. Bryant died in October 2013, according to an obituary.
Irving Faught, administrator for the state Securities Department, said he could not comment on the matter because of the ongoing litigation.
The stock transfers were made in the form of bonuses to employees, and no money changed hands, Scambler said.
“I would say that this action is unwarranted,” he said. “We did not make any sales of stock — we issued stock to people as bonuses without anybody paying anything as part of the transaction.”
No investors lost any money as part of the transactions, Scambler said.
“Cantex will repay any investor that acquired stock directly from Mr. Bryant for any funds because there were none,” Scambler said. “This is a tragic case of somebody trying to raise a red flag when there isn’t even a smoldering ember. This department should go after people who are actually doing things wrong, not helping other people.”