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Regulatory Enforcement

We have substantial experience representing organizations and individuals in civil enforcement investigations conducted by the U.S. Securities Exchange Commission, the U.S. Commodity Futures Trading Commission, the New York Attorney General, and other state attorneys general, as well as SROs including FINRA, the CME, and ICE.  Our thorough understanding of markets, financial products, and securities industry practices makes us an asset for our clients in defending investigations where subject matter knowledge combined with effective advocacy can greatly influence a regulator’s perception of the conduct under investigation.  This is critical in an arena where the initiation of an enforcement action may mean the end of a career or the end of a franchise.

Representative Matters

  • A sell-side equity research analyst in an SEC investigation settled on favorable terms after white paper and Wells submissions
  • A hedge fund in an SEC investigation into valuation practices where the SEC terminated its investigation pre-Wells after certain irregular investigative tactics led to the recusal of  a regional office
  • A major investment bank in ICE and CME investigations into the malfunction of an automated trading system that erroneously generated a large volume of futures trades, both of which settled on favorable terms
  • A hedge fund in an SEC investigation into certain allegedly irregular redemption practices, in which the Staff issued a closing letter
  • Two Dubai-based traders in SEC v.  One or More Unknown Traders in the Securities of Onyx Pharmaceuticals, Inc. (SDNY),  in which our clients’ trading profits were wrongfully frozen by the SEC, we appeared to defend the case, and we obtained a voluntary dismissal of the complaint and the release of all frozen assets
  • The former chief global and U.S. equity strategist at a major investment bank in a FINRA investigation of conflict-of-interest disclosure practices, which was settled on favorable terms
  • A trader based in Estonia whose large trading profits had been frozen by the SEC because he allegedly traded on inside information about corporate transactions he stole from Business Wire’s website, for whom we negotiated a settlement that permitted the release of a significant percentage of his profits
  • A major accounting firm in a New York Attorney General’s Office Martin Act investigation of the audit of several Madoff “feeder” funds, which was terminated with no action taken
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