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Top Ten Whistleblower Developments of 2019

Posted  02/6/20
Slingshot and stones
By any measure, 2019 was a Very Big Year for whistleblowers.  Our annual Top Ten lists identified 2019’s most significant financial recoveries by whistleblowers, as well as recoveries in enforcement actions at the federal and state level involving government procurement, healthcare, financial, tax, and other types of fraud.  But the numbers, as impressive as they are, can’t tell the full story of the impact that...

Top Ten SEC and CFTC Recoveries of 2019

Posted  01/24/20
Silver Whistle Hanging
2019 was another busy year for the SEC and CFTC.  Once again, the SEC netted hundreds of millions of dollars in penalties and fines from companies and individuals accused of defrauding investors, breaching fiduciary duties, and violating the securities laws.  And that’s in addition to the SEC’s robust FCPA enforcement in 2019.  Meanwhile, the CFTC continued to root out market manipulators and other fraudsters...

Top Ten Whistleblower Awards of 2019

Posted  01/9/20
Whistleblower in Text
2019 was another strong year for whistleblowers, who once again collectively recovered billions of dollars for the government and hundreds of millions of dollars in whistleblower rewards through their filing of lawsuits under the qui tam provisions of the False Claims Act.  Whistleblowers this past year also continued to secure financial rewards under the Dodd-Frank SEC Whistleblower and CFTC Whistleblower programs,...

CFTC Whistleblower Program Annual Report Shows Program Open for Business, yet Challenges Persist

Posted  11/15/19
Screenshot of CFTC Whistleblower Program web page
Fifteen million dollars is how much the United States Commodity Futures Trading Commission’s (CFTC) Whistleblower Program paid whistleblowers in FY 2019 according to the agency’s annual report to Congress.  This amount includes:
  • $7 million to one individual whistleblower;
  • Over $2 million to a non-insider whistleblower who provided independent analysis of market data; and,
  • Close to $1.5 million to a...

How to Be a Whistleblower

Posted  07/19/19
How to be a whistleblower
You know about fraud, waste, abuse, or corruption by an individual or a company. Someone is getting by with cheating -- taking money from the government, taxpayers, or investors, or even harming others, such as patients. You are deeply troubled about it and want the proper authorities to stop it. You are worried whether you will be heard, taken seriously, and protected. You wonder if your information fits within a...

Catch of the Week — Merrill Lynch Commodities Inc.

Posted  06/28/19
MerrillLynchLogoOfBull
Merrill Lynch Commodities Inc (“Merrill”), a commodity trading subsidiary of Bank of America Corporation, agreed on June 25th to two $25 million settlements with both the Department of Justice (“DOJ”) and the Commodity Futures Trading Commission (“CFTC”) to resolve allegations it conducted deceptive trading practices in United States commodities markets.

DOJ Criminal Violations

This settlement resolved...

Calling all FCPA Whistleblowers — The CFTC Wants You!

Posted  06/19/19
Businessmen Holding Foreign Currency in an Envelope
If you have information on Foreign Corrupt Practices Act (FCPA) violations in the commodities or derivatives markets, the Commodity Futures Trading Commission (CFTC) wants to hear from you. The agency made this clear in a recently-issued CFTC "Whistleblower Alert" calling on all FCPA whistleblowers to step forward and report what they know. The agency even dangled the potential for monetary rewards for those...

Ted Siedle is the rare SEC whistleblower who allows us to put a face to the name.

Posted  05/24/19
Ted Siedle Whistleblower Headshot
After two years of waiting, the recipient of what was the largest whistleblower award to date under the SEC Whistleblower Program when it was first announced in 2017, was finally paid by the SEC. This week, he received his share of a $50 million reward to two whistleblowers for exposing conflicts of interest at JP Morgan that led to a $267 million fine by the SEC. Last year, the whistleblower also received $30 million...

CFTC Makes Another Whistleblower Award

Posted  05/10/19
Commodity Futures Trading Commission Logo
On Monday, the Commodity Futures Trading Commission (CFTC) announced a whistleblower award of roughly $1.5 million. It is the latest in a string of whistleblower awards from an agency that has made it very clear that after a slow start in implementing its whistleblower program it is finally open for whistleblower business. CFTC Enforcement Director James McDonald could not have been more direct on this point:...

DOJ to Corporate America — Embrace the Whistleblower

Posted  05/9/19
Hanging Folder with Compliance Tab
In a clear push to companies to tighten up their internal compliance efforts, the DOJ Criminal Division recently announced a remake of the agency's guidelines for corporate compliance programs. The document, titled "The Evaluation of Corporate Compliance Programs," updates a previous version of the guidelines and is designed to provide more insight and context into the steps DOJ expects companies to take to ensure...
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