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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...

Catch of the Week — Yukom Communications and Others Face CFTC Claims of Binary Options Fraud

Posted  08/16/19
computerized trading
The Commodity Futures Trading Commission filed suit against five entities and four individuals on August 12, 2019, in the Northern District of Illinois for running a $103 million fraudulent binary options scheme. The defendants, led by Israeli company Yukom Communications Ltd.,which marketed binary options using two websites known as BinaryBook and BigOption. In recent years, the CFTC has targeted fraudulent binary...

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...

The Latest on Cryptocurrency, Offshore Tax Avoidance and Money-Laundering, and Whistleblowing: A Report from OffshoreAlert Miami 2019

Posted  05/3/19
Hanging Hundred Dollar Bills on Clothes Line
“A diverse collection of the hunters and the hunted.” That’s how the Wall Street Journal described the OffshoreAlert Conference in 2009. The 2019 conference was no different, bringing together those who work in the offshore industry, the government enforcers who try to stop the unscrupulous among them, and the asset recovery professionals who pursue lost funds. Alongside them were whistleblowers and their...

Top Ten Federal Financial Fraud Recoveries of 2018

Posted  01/25/19
Wooden gavel and handcuffs on top of U.S. currency
While 2018 has been a banner year for FCPA, Tax, and SEC & CFTC recoveries, in the bottomless pit of financial frauds that hurt taxpayers, the government, consumers, investors, and the American economy, 2018 brought us additional stunning recoveries for violations related to residential-mortgage backed securities, international economic sanctions, consumer protection, anti-money-laundering, EB-5 investment fraud, and...

New York Hits Credit Suisse with $135M Fine for Forex Violations

Posted  11/14/17
By the C|C Whistleblower Lawyer Team Credit Suisse AG agreed to pay a $135 million fine to settle charges by the New York State Department of Financial Services (DFS) that the bank violated New York banking law through a variety of illegal activities that disadvantaged customers. Specifically, the government found that from at least 2008 to 2015, Credit Suisse "consistently engaged in unlawful, unsafe and unsound...

SEC Charges Day Trader for Fraud and Market Manipulation

Posted  11/1/17
By the C|C Whistleblower Lawyer Team This week, the Securities and Exchange Commission (“SEC”) announced charges against a day trader accused of accessing over 100 victims’ brokerage accounts to make unauthorized trades that artificially altered various stock prices. The defendant, Joseph P. Willner, allegedly traded on those artificial prices using his personal account to secure at least $700,000 in illicit...

Financial Spoofs No Laughing Matter: Chicago Speed-Chess Champ Can’t Outmaneuver CFTC

Posted  10/24/16
By the C|C Whistleblower Lawyer Team Although some take issue with cheeky parody, most of us love a good spoof. Unless, that is, the spoof is the sort that lands you in hot water with financial regulators. Chicago-based trader and speed-chess champ Igor Oystacher and his firm, 3Red Trading LLC, found out the hard way that spoofing, at least in financial industry jargon, is no laughing matter. Indeed, financial...

Russian Roulette in Futures Trading: The CFTC Cracks Down on Fictitious Trades

Posted  09/21/16
By Ronny Valdes On Monday September 19th, the U.S. Commodity and Futures Trading Commission (CFTC) announced the filing and simultaneous $5 million settlement of charges against JSC VTB Bank (VTB), a Russian state-backed lender, for executing fraudulent ruble-dollar trades. VTB and its U.K subsidiary, VTB Capital PLC (VTB Capital), were accused of executing noncompetitive and fictitious block trades in ruble-dollar...

In Their Own Words -- Goelman

Posted  05/25/16

-- “We will vigorously continue to investigate any efforts to manipulate financial benchmarks, and we will take action where possible to protect the integrity of these benchmarks.”

The CFTC’s Enforcement Director, Aitan Goelman, commenting on recent settlements with Citibank over charges that the bank manipulated trading benchmarks.

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