We have helped our clients avoid enforcement actions or criminal prosecution and, in cases where enforcement action was unavoidable, we have been able to minimize any penalty or associated relief. Those matters have involved a wide range of potential rule violations, including;
- Market manipulation
- Disruptive trading practices
- Mis-reporting off-exchange transactions
- False statements
- Improper sales practices
- Violation of customer segregated fund rules
- Uncommercial order entry for indicative opening prices
- Failures to supervise
- Inadequate anti-money laundering procedures
- FCPA violations
- Fraudulent brokering of mortgage-backed securities trades
- Purchase of improper mutual fund share classes for advisory clients
- Pump and dump schemes
- Improper allocation of private equity fund expenses
Often we are called upon to handle the internal investigation of these matters, before or during the Government’s inquiries. Many of these matters are accompanied by follow-on litigation, including class actions. We use our superior litigation judgment and strategic approach to achieve successful outcomes, working together with our nationally recognized class action counsel in putative class actions. We also handle high-stakes litigation between firms as well as suits by firms against customers.
Examples of successful outcomes by members of our firm include:
- The U.S. Department of Justice informed our client that it intended to indict the client for market manipulation. We met several times with the prosecutors, both locally and in Washington D.C., and made detailed presentations to explain the client’s actions. After these presentations, the federal prosecutors decided not to bring criminal charges.
- We successfully defended both the Chief Executive Officer and the President of a billion-dollar public holding company in an internal investigation and SEC, DOJ, and IRS investigations relating to FCPA and tax issues. Neither client was prosecuted.
- After the SEC’s Office of Compliance and Inspections (OCIE) issued a deficiency letter to our regional brokerage firm client, we helped our client resolve OCIE’s concern with no enforcement action by counseling our client on enhancing its anti-money laundering program and making OCIE comfortable that the enhancements were satisfactory and no enforcement referral was warranted.