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Mind the Red Flags – FinCEN Issues Penalty for Failure to File SARs on Director’s Suspicious Activity

The U.S. Treasury Department’s Financial Crimes Enforcement Network (FinCEN) recently penalized First National Community Bank (FNCB) $1.5 million for failing to file suspicious activity reports (SARs) despite the existence of...more

This Week In Securities Litigation

The Commission recently filed an amicus brief defending its Dodd-Frank whistleblower rules. Those rules specify that the anti-retaliation provisions of those amendments to the Exchange Act protect those who chose not to...more

UK Home Affairs Committee – Evaluating the National Crime Agency

On 17 February, the House of Commons Home Affairs Committee published its report on the architecture of policing in the United Kingdom. This report follows a period of five years of restructuring and reshaping policing at the...more

SEC – NY AG Halt Fraudulent Investment Scheme

The SEC teamed last week with the New York AG to halt an on-going investment fund fraud run by a Pakistani citizen residing in New York. The SEC obtained a freeze order. The NY AG filed criminal charges and arrested the...more

DOJ and State AGs Announce Settlement with Credit Rating Agency

On February 3, the DOJ announced a settlement agreement with a large credit rating agency and its parent company for $1.375 billion – a record amount according to the DOJ – in connection with the agency’s alleged “scheme to...more

2014 Insider Trading Annual Review

Overview of Insider Training Law - “Insider trading” is an ambiguous and overinclusive term. Trading by insiders includes both legal and illegal conduct. The legal version occurs when certain corporate insiders –...more

"France's Double-Trial System for Market Abuses May Be Headed for Reform"

In 2015, the French double-trial system for market abuses will be referred to the Constitutional Council for an assessment of the system’s constitutionality under the double jeopardy rule (or, using the Latin maxim, the ne...more

This Week In Securities Litigation

The DOJ’s settlement with S&P for $1.4 billion, coupled with admissions of fact, made headlines this week. The settlement was joined by 19 states and the District of Columbia. The DOJ and the states will essentially split the...more

DOJ Announces First FCPA Enforcement Action of 2015

Last week, the Department of Justice announced the first Foreign Corrupt Practices Act enforcement action of 2015, against Dmitrij Harder, the former owner and president of the Chestnut Consulting Group. The allegations are...more

This Week In Securities Litigation

FCPA enforcement was the focus this first week of the new year. The DOJ brought FCPA and Travel Act charges against an individual alleged to have repeatedly bribed an official of the European Bank of Reconstruction and...more

The Rule of Lenity: Should Courts Defer to Agency Interpretations of RESPA § 8?

On November 10, 2014, the U.S. Supreme Court denied a petition for a writ of certiorari in a case entitled Douglas F. Whitman v. United States. Whitman was seeking to have the Supreme Court review (and, hopefully, overturn)...more

A New Prosecutorial Frontier: SEC Seeks Bans on Municipal Officials

The Securities and Exchange Commission (“SEC”) was recently granted a preliminary agreement by a federal judge to bar a municipal official from participating in future bond sales. As reported by the Wall Street Journal, the...more

Justices Scalia and Thomas Amenable to Reexamining Deference to SEC Statutory Interpretations

Like Prince Charming searching for the foot that fit the glass slipper, Justice Scalia recently issued a statement advising that he and Justice Thomas would be receptive to granting certiorari to a petition properly...more

SEC’s Authority to Interpret the Securities Laws Comes Under Fire in Criminal Enforcement

A recent statement by Justice Antonin Scalia accompanying the Supreme Court’s denial of certiorari in a criminal insider trading case raises fundamental questions about how the courts interpret the federal securities laws and...more

Recent Key Bitcoin and Virtual Currency Regulatory and Law Enforcement Developments

In recent months, US federal and state regulators have continued to focus on Bitcoin and the adoption of a regulatory framework for it and other "virtual currencies," as well as the enforcement of existing securities laws to...more

Law Enforcement Bliss: The SEC As Policeman, Judge and Jury

New York’s Southern District Court Judge Jed Rakoff is always worth listening to. He expresses trenchant views about the rule of law elegantly and politely. He is fearlessly independent. Prosecutors in the US, who are...more

Rengan Rajaratnam Settlement Exposes Weak Point in SEC’s Newish Admissions Policy

You remember Rengan Rajaratnam, right? He broke the S.D.N.Y.’s long streak of insider trading victories when a jury acquitted him in July. I wondered what the effect on his case with the SEC would be. Would he settle? ...more

This Week In Securities Litigation

As the government fiscal year drew to a close, the SEC continued what appears to be an emerging trend of filing insider trading actions as administrative proceedings rather than civil injunctive actions in Federal Court. The...more

Banks’ High Cost of Doing Business with the Marijuana Industry

In 1996, California voters passed Proposition 215, making it the first state to allow for the medical use of marijuana. To date, a total of twenty-one states and the District of Columbia allow for comprehensive public medical...more

"SEC Judge Issues Initial Decision Regarding Chinese Affiliates of the Big Four Accounting Firms"

On January 22, 2014, U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission Administrative Law Judge Cameron Elliot (the ALJ) issued an initial decision censuring the Chinese accounting firms affiliated with Ernst & Young LLP, KPMG LLP...more

Lenity, Chevron Deference And Consumer Protection Laws

Several federal statutes, including the Real Estate Settlement Procedures Act (“RESPA”), the Truth in Lending Act (“TILA”) and the Servicemembers Civil Relief Act (“SCRA”) permit the government to seek either civil or...more

United States of America v. Ross William Ulbricht

Federal indictment against Silk Road founder Ross Ulbricht for narcotics trafficking, computer hacking, and money laundering

Full text copy of the federal indictment filed September 27, 2013 against Silk Road founder Ross Ulbricht – aka Dread Pirate Roberts, DPR, and Silk Road – for narcotics trafficking, computer hacking, and money laundering (the...more

FinCEN: Accountant and Elder Abuse

We have been keeping track of FinCEN's SAR Activity Review – Trends, Tips & Issues virtually from its inception. In its just issued May 2013 report, FinCEN provides new information regarding two areas of importance: 1)...more

Select Broker-Dealer, Investment Adviser, and Investment Company Enforcement Cases and Developments: 2012 Year in Review

This Outline highlights key U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission (the "SEC" or the "Commission") and Financial Industry Regulatory Authority ("FINRA") enforcement developments and cases regarding broker-dealers during...more

Should Wall Street Fear Mary Jo White? [Video]

Feb. 1 (Bloomberg Law) -- Mary Jo White has spent decades as both a federal prosecutor and later as outside counsel for many financial institutions. If the Senate confirms her as SEC chair, will Wall Street be facing a lawyer...more

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