David Smyth

David Smyth

Brooks Pierce

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Wrapping up Securities Enforcement Forum 2014

I was lucky enough to spend Tuesday at Bruce Carton’s Securities Enforcement Forum 2014. In three years, it has gone from zero to the preeminent securities enforcement law conference anywhere. I blogged it hurriedly...more

10/17/2014 - Compliance Enforcement Enforcement Actions FCPA SEC

Securities Enforcement Forum 2014 — SEC/FINRA Investigations & Cybersecurity Priorities

Yesterday I blogged from the Securities Enforcement Forum 2014, Bruce Carton’s excellent one-day conference, held at the Four Seasons hotel in Washington, D.C. The posts will be fairly raw, and certainly not verbatim...more

10/16/2014 - Cybersecurity FINRA SEC Strategic Enforcement Plan

Securities Enforcement Forum 2014 — Directors Panel

Yesterday I blogged from the Securities Enforcement Forum 2014, Bruce Carton’s excellent one-day conference, held at the Four Seasons hotel in Washington, D.C. The posts will be fairly raw, and certainly not verbatim...more

10/16/2014 - Big Data DOJ Insider Trading Investment Adviser Market Access Rule Market Manipulation MCDC OCIE Pyramid Schemes SEC Strategic Enforcement Plan

Securities Enforcement Forum 2014 — Current Developments in Trials, Testimony, Wells, APs and Settlements

Yesterday, I blogged from the Securities Enforcement Forum 2014, Bruce Carton’s excellent one-day conference, this year held at the Four Seasons hotel in Washington, D.C. The posts will be fairly raw, and certainly not...more

10/16/2014 - Professional Conferences SEC Strategic Enforcement Plan

Securities Enforcement Forum 2014 — FCPA, SEC/DOJ Joint Actions, and Other Recent Criminalization Trends

Today I’m blogging from Securities Enforcement Forum 2014, Bruce Carton’s excellent one-day conference, this year being held at the Four Seasons hotel in Washington, D.C. The posts will be fairly raw, and certainly not...more

10/15/2014 - Compliance Criminalization DOJ Enforcement Actions FCPA Joint Plan of Action SEC Strategic Enforcement Plan

Securities Enforcement Forum 2014 — Financial Reporting and Accounting Fraud

Today I’m blogging from Securities Enforcement Forum 2014, Bruce Carton’s excellent one-day conference, this year being held at the Four Seasons hotel in Washington, D.C. The posts will be fairly raw, and certainly not...more

10/15/2014 - Accounting Accounting Fraud Financial Reporting PCAOB SEC Strategic Enforcement Plan

Securities Enforcement Forum 2014 — Morning Keynote Speech by Commissioner Piwowar

Today I’m blogging from Securities Enforcement Forum 2014, Bruce Carton’s excellent one-day conference, this year being held at the Four Seasons hotel in Washington, D.C. The posts will be fairly raw, and certainly not...more

10/15/2014 - Compliance Enforcement Enforcement Actions SEC

Ghost of David Sokol Haunts SEC’s Insider Trading Case against Szymik and Peixoto

It never actually became a case, but maybe you remember this matter from a few years ago. In January 2011, former Berkshire Hathaway executive David Sokol bought about 100,000 shares in Lubrizol Corporation shortly before...more

10/7/2014 - Enforcement Actions Financial Holding Company Hedge Funds Herballife Insider Trading Material Nonpublic Information Pershing Square Management SEC

Two Points about the SEC’s $30+ Million Whistleblower Award

You probably saw that on Monday the SEC announced its largest-ever award under the Dodd-Frank whistleblower provisions: over $30 million to an unnamed tipster from overseas. As with all of the awards issued so far, the...more

9/25/2014 - Anti-Retaliation Provisions Dodd-Frank Foreign Nationals SEC Siemens Whistleblower Awards

Charged with Interpreting “Officer” in Corporate By-Laws, Third Circuit Decides 12 Random People Are Better Suited for the Job

Here are two things I thought when I was a kid: (1) Quicksand was a real threat, something that could suck me into the Earth if I wasn’t careful when walking around outside. I don’t know if this was a function of too many...more

9/24/2014 - Attorney's Fees Bylaws Corporate Governance Goldman Sachs Officers

Speech by DOJ’s Marshall Miller Could Be Harbinger of Bad Things to Come

So here’s a thing. Last week Marshall Miller, the No. 2 official in the Justice Department’s Criminal Division, made a speech urging corporations to focus its investigations into misconduct on individual malefactors and...more

9/23/2014 - DOJ Enforcement Enforcement Actions Personal Liability Police Misconduct

One More Thing about Liu v. Siemens, the Foreign Whistleblower Case

Last week I wrote about the Second Circuit’s recent decision in Liu v. Siemens AG, in which the court held that the Dodd-Frank Act’s anti-retaliation provisions do not apply to whistleblowers overseas. As I think about it,...more

9/4/2014 - Anti-Retaliation Provisions Dodd-Frank Popular Retaliation Siemens Whistleblower Protection Policies Whistleblowers

Freedom to Retaliate against Foreign Whistleblowers May Not Be as Much Fun as It First Appears

What I’m about to say is grossly oversimplified, but here goes: The Dodd-Frank Act’s whistleblower provisions have two primary prongs. The first says that an individual who voluntarily provides the SEC with original...more

8/27/2014 - Dodd-Frank Employer Liability Issues Enforcement Actions FCPA Foreign Nationals Popular Sanctions Siemens Whistleblower Awards Whistleblowers

Unregistered Brokers: Watch out for Shortcuts

One of the things I’ve learned since returning to private practice three years ago is that people like to raise money for profitable enterprises when they can. And why not? It can be lucrative. And if the people raising...more

8/21/2014 - Broker-Dealer Brokers Compliance SEC

Guns and More Guns: SEC Hits Smith & Wesson for FCPA Violations

One thing the SEC likes to do is bring cases with a lot of deterrent value. That is, cases that it hopes will scare other people and companies into complying with the law. Often that means cases with large price tags...more

7/29/2014 - Corporate Counsel Disgorgement Enforcement Enforcement Actions FCPA Gun Manufacturers Penalties Popular Prejudgment Interest SEC Smith & Wesson

Foreign Pink Sheets Companies and the FCPA

Penny stock companies have been much in the news recently. They can be tough entities for law enforcement to look into given that their officers and directors are often not inclined to cooperate with government...more

7/21/2014 - Enforcement Enforcement Actions FCPA Foreign Corporations Popular White Collar Crimes

Three Thoughts about FINRA’s Weird Japanese Insider Trading Case

One of the things you’re not supposed to do if you’re in the securities business – or any business, really – is buy and sell securities on the basis of material, nonpublic information in breach of a duty not to do so. The...more

7/15/2014 - Enforcement Actions FINRA Fraud Insider Trading Japan Popular SEC

D.C. Circuit Bolsters Attorney-Client Privilege in Internal Investigations

You may remember that in March, the U.S. District Court in D.C. threw the corporate world into a bit of a tizzy with a ruling that documents related to an internal investigation at Kellogg Brown & Root were not privileged and...more

7/1/2014 - Attorney-Client Privilege Chief Compliance Officers Disclosure Requirements False Claims Act Internal Investigations Kellogg Brown & Root

Commissioner Aguilar Addresses Boards’ Focus on Cybersecurity

One June 10th SEC Commissioner Luis Aguilar made a speech before the New York Stock Exchange, and he took the opportunity to discuss good corporate governance as it relates to cybersecurity and boards of directors....more

6/27/2014 - Adobe Board of Directors Corporate Governance Cybersecurity Dodd-Frank NIST SEC SnapChat Target

The SEC v. Congress . . . for the Title

You don’t see this every day. On Friday, the SEC filed a subpoena enforcement action seeking production of documents from the House Ways and Means Committee and documents and testimony from one of its staff members, Brian...more

6/23/2014 - CMS Enforcement Enforcement Actions Mary Jo White Medicare Medicare Advantage SEC Ways and Means Committee

SEC Files First Whistleblower Retaliation Case

Well, you can’t say Sean McKessy didn’t warn you. The chief of the SEC’s whistleblower office has been warning for months at least that his group was looking to bring a stand-alone case enforcing the anti-retaliation...more

6/18/2014 - Anti-Retaliation Provisions Dodd-Frank Enforcement Enforcement Actions Hiring & Firing Popular SEC Whistleblowers

Criminal Procedure in Game of Thrones

Game of Thrones watchers know its quasi-Medieval Westeros as a remarkably harsh, unforgiving world. There’s just not a lot of room for error. In fact, if you’re a character and lose your head (figuratively), you just might...more

6/9/2014 - Criminal Procedure Jury Waivers Popular Trials Young Lawyers

Judge Rakoff Reversed by Second Circuit on SEC-Citi case, Still Sort of Wins

You’d be forgiven if you’d forgotten at this point, but way back in Obama’s first term, the SEC once investigated and sued Citigroup for its involvement in a collateralized debt obligation deal. As the SEC said in its...more

6/5/2014 - Chevron Deference Citigroup Collateralized Debt Obligations Consent Decrees Enforcement Enforcement Actions Interlocutory Appeals Judge Rakoff Popular Risk Management SEC SEC v Citigroup Settlement

What if the Apple/Beats story is fake?

The internet blew up last week when rumors leaked that Apple was preparing to buy Dr. Dre’s and Jimmy Iovine’s Beats headphones company for $3.2 billion. Steve Jobs never would have done that! It’s confusing! It’s...more

5/15/2014 - Acquisitions Apple Beats Electronics Technology

It Starts with the Custody Rule

If you’re an investment adviser with custody of your client’s assets, is there a more important rule to be sure you’re on top of than the custody rule? If you’re on the SEC’s IA exam staff, is there a more important rule to...more

5/13/2014 - Compliance Custody Rule Fraud SEC

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