Sanctions Securities & Exchange Commission

News & Analysis as of

Broker, Compliance Officer Fined For AML Failures

Money laundering continues to be a key focus of regulators. Recently, for example, FINCEN Director Jennifer Shasky Calvery discussed money laundering through real estate transactions. Earlier this year the SEC brought an...more

Recent Criticisms of the SEC: Fair or Unfair?

Over the last few years, the SEC has been criticized for (1) failing to “consistently and aggressively enforce the securities laws and protect investors and the public,” (2) obtaining sanctions that amount to only a slap on...more

SEC Affirms Sanctions on Stanford’s CCO

The SEC recently affirmed its ALJ’s ruling barring Alan Stanford’s former CCO from the industry and ordering monetary penalties of $260,000 together with $591,992 in disgorgement. The Commission held the CCO approved false...more

Even Whistleblowers Must Pay the Piper

In a heavily redacted decision issued on April 5, 2016, the SEC approved the claim of one whistleblower and denied the claim of another for providing information related to an unidentified enforcement action. The SEC awarded...more

Fund Founder, Chief Legal Officer and Controller Sanctioned by SEC

The founder of a venture capital fund, assisted by its chief legal officer and controller, took more money from the fund as “advanced fees” than was actually due and owing. The money was used for other entities in the...more

SEC Administrative Case Reinforces Current Emphasis on Internal Controls

Consistent with its current focus on internal control over financial reporting (ICFR), the Securities and Exchange Commission recently sanctioned a company and individuals for failing to adequately evaluate and audit the...more

FinCrimes Update - February 2016 Summary, Volume 4, Issue 2

OCC AND FINCEN ASSESS CIVIL MONEY PENALTIES AGAINST FLORIDA-BASED WEALTH MANAGEMENT FIRM FOR BSA VIOLATIONS - On February 25, the OCC, in coordination with FinCEN, announced that it took action against a Florida-based...more

2015 Year-End Cross-Border Government Investigations and Regulatory Enforcement Review

Globalization has connected people, companies, and products across national borders more than ever. Goods and services developed in one part of the world are readily available in other parts of the world and technology is...more

Bridging the Week - March 2016

California Federal Court Refuses to Stop FERC Lawsuit to Uphold the Validity of US $453 Million Penalty for Manipulating Electricity Prices: A federal court in California refused to stop a lawsuit by the Federal Energy...more

E-Discovery Update: Changes to Rule 37’s Failure-to-Preserve-ESI Sanctions Impact Recent Rulings

For years, companies have battled different sanction standards for the failure to preserve documents. This led to over-preservation, where, to avoid accusations of “negligent” failure, companies preserved every shred of...more

Corporate Investigations & White Collar Defense - February 2016

Eye on the Courts—Recent Opinions and Rulings of Note - Why it matters: From a white collar and securities fraud standpoint, there has been a lot of noteworthy activity in the courts of late. The Supreme Court granted...more

A Compilation of Enforcement and Non-Enforcement Actions

Non-Enforcement - FINRA’s Proposed Pay-to-Play Rule Will Impact Investment Advisers - Late last year (December 24, 2015), the Financial Industry Regulatory Authority (FINRA) submitted a proposed rule to the U.S....more

SEC, NYAG Sanction Three Dark Pools

The SEC and the New York Attorney General announced settlements with Barclays Capital Inc. and Credit Suisse Securities (USA) LLC centered on the operation of dark pool trading venues. In the Matter of Barclays Capital Inc.,...more

SEC Sanctions Alt Fund Asset Manager for Fee Overcharges and Misleading Investors

On January 19, 2016, the SEC settled proceedings against a Denver-based asset manager for material misstatements made in the offer and sale of units of a publicly-registered managed futures fund. The SEC found that the...more

"Auditors Must Beware the Consequences of Settling SEC Enforcement Actions"

The Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) launched “Operation Broken Gate” in October 2013 to hold accountable those auditors who have intentionally or negligently violated professional auditing or accounting standards....more

SEC Nabs Immigration Lawyers Acting as Unregistered Brokers, Orders Fines and Disgorgement

In 2012, we wrote about the risky business of immigration lawyers accepting finder’s fees for selling limited partnership interests in EB-5 deals. For the past several years, securities law violations have been part and...more

SEC Once Again Sanctions The CCO of An Investment Advisory Firm

On November 19, 2015, the SEC announced a settlement with investment advisory firm Sands Brothers Asset Management, LLC for violating the Custody Rule, SEC Rule 206(4)-2, which requires that registered investment advisers who...more

SEC Sanctions Adviser for Misstatements in Advertisements, Client Presentations and Regulatory Filings

The SEC found that a registered investment adviser that operates as a “manager of managers” misstated a sub-adviser’s investment performance in communications with its clients, potential clients and the SEC. According to the...more

Structured Thoughts: News for the financial services community, Volume 6, Issue 7

Structured Products Offerings and Research Reports: Introduction - Structured products are sold by broker-dealers, many of which are affiliates of large investment banks. The equity research group of the same...more

Red Notice Newsletter - October 2015

Welcome to the October 2015 edition of Red Notice, a publication of Akin Gump Strauss Hauer & Feld LLP. This month on the anticorruption front, a Japanese multinational conglomerate settles U.S. Securities and Exchange...more

A Compilation of Enforcement and Non-Enforcement Actions

Non-Enforcement - SEC Decides Against Mounting an Appeal in Koch Ruling - The July 2015 ruling by the D.C. Circuit Court in Koch v. SEC will apparently not be challenged by the SEC. The Court ruled in that...more

Bridging the Week - October 2015 #4

Proposed Automated Trading Rule by CFTC Likely to Follow Already Existing Best Practices; SEC Also Contemplating New Measures - In two speeches last week, Timothy Massad, Chairman of the Commodity Futures Trading...more

Financial Services Weekly News - October 2015 #3

Regulatory Developments: FINRA Requests Comment on Rules Relating to Financial Exploitation of Vulnerable Adults - On Oct. 15 FINRA published Regulatory Notice 15-37, requesting comment on proposed amendments to...more

SEC Sanctions Broker-Dealer and Affiliated Asset Manager for Breaching Information Barriers for Exchange-Traded Products

On October 8, 2015, the Securities and Exchange Commission charged an investment adviser and a broker dealer for failing to maintain and enforce polices to prevent misuse of material non-public information. Without admitting...more

SEC Accepts DC Circuit’s Decision Vacating Retroactive Punishment

Following the D.C. Circuit’s July 14, 2015 decision in Koch et al. v. Securities and Exchange Commission, No. 14-1134 (D.C. Cir. July 14, 2015), which held that the SEC could not retroactively punish an investment advisor for...more

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