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March 25, 2015

Thomas E. Jackson and Preston J. Harrison, operators of Ohio-based Imperial Integrated Health Research and Development LLC, were convicted of defrauding their company’s investors and diverting investors’ funds for their own personal use in connection with their sale of the sports energy drink OXYwater.  DOJ

February 3, 2015

Ratings Agency giant Standard & Poor’s Financial Services (S&P), along with its parent corporation McGraw Hill Financial Inc., agreed to pay $1.375B to settle charges it schemed to defraud investors in structured financial products known as Residential Mortgage-Backed Securities (RMBS) and Collateralized Debt Obligations (CDOs). According to the government, S&P falsely represented that its ratings of RMBS and CDOs were objective, independent and uninfluenced by S&P’s business relationships with the investment banks that issued the securities. Instead, S&P issued inflated ratings that misrepresented the securities’ true credit risks causing RMBS and CDO investors to incur substantial losses. Whistleblower Insider

January 30, 2015

Maxim Chukharev, former information technology manager for Liberty Reserve, a company that operated one of the world’s most widely used digital currency services, was sentenced to 36 months in prison for conspiring to operate an unlicensed money transmitting business. According to the government, Liberty Reserve billed itself as the Internet’s “largest payment processor and money transfer system” but instead was created, structured and operated to help users conduct illegal transactions anonymously and launder the proceeds of their crimes. According to court records, before being shut down by the government in May 2013, Liberty Reserve conducted approximately 55 million transactions through its system totaling more than $6B in funds which encompassed suspected proceeds of credit card fraud, identity theft, investment fraud, computer hacking, child pornography, narcotics trafficking and other crimes.DOJ

September 9, 2014

Don Langford, former chief credit officer and senior vice president of Nebraska-based TierOne Bank, pleaded guilty for his role in a scheme to defraud TierOne’s shareholders and regulators. Specifically, Langford conspired with others to hide losses at the bank by cooking the bank’s books and reporting falsified information to stakeholders, regulators, external auditors, and the investing public. The bank even made an unsuccessful attempt to get taxpayer TARP funds in November 2008. TierOne filed for bankruptcy shortly after the Office of Thrift Supervision shut the bank down in June 2010. DOJ

August 29, 2014

Former CEO of ArthroCare Corporation Michael Baker and former ArthroCare CFO Michael Gluk were sentenced to serve 20 years and 10 years in prison, respectively, for their leading roles in a $750 million securities fraud scheme. On June 2, 2014, they were convicted by a jury of wire fraud, securities fraud, and conspiracy to commit wire and securities fraud in connection with their scheme to artificially inflate the share price of ArthroCare stock through sham transactions. DOJ

August 21, 2014

Bank of America agreed to pay $16.65 billion to resolve federal and state mortgage fraud claims against the bank and its former and current subsidiaries, including Countrywide Financial Corporation andMerrill Lynch. It is the largest civil settlement with a single entity in American history. And it includes a $5 billion penalty under the Financial Institutions Reform, Recovery and Enforcement Act (FIRREA), the largest FIRREA penalty ever. As part of the settlement, BofA acknowledged misrepresenting the quality of billions of dollars worth of risky mortgage loans. Whistleblower Insider

July 21, 2014

Jing Wang, the former Executive Vice President and President of Global Business Operations for Qualcomm Inc., pleaded guilty to insider trading in shares of Qualcomm and Atheros Communications. He also pleaded guilty to laundering the proceeds of his insider trading using an offshore shell company. DOJ

July 14, 2014

Citigroup agreed to pay $7B to resolve government claims related to the bank’s packaging, securitization, marketing, sale and issuance of residential mortgage-backed securities (RMBS) which, according to the government, “contributed mightily to the financial crisis that devastated our economy in 2008.” The settlement includes a $4B civil penalty — the largest penalty to date under the Financial Institutions Reform, Recovery and Enforcement Act (FIRREA). Whistleblower Insider

June 2, 2014

A federal jury convicted Michael Baker and Michael Gluk, the former CEO and former CFO of Texas-based medical device manufacturers ArthroCare Corp., for orchestrating a fraud scheme that resulted in shareholder losses of over $400M. Evidence at trial demonstrated that Baker and Gluk masterminded a scheme to artificially inflate sales and revenue through a series of end-of-quarter transactions involving several of ArthroCare’s distributors beginning in 2005 and continuing until 2009. Baker, Gluk and other ArthroCare employees determined the type and amount of product to be shipped to distributors based on ArthroCare’s need to meet Wall Street analyst forecasts, rather than distributors’ actual orders. ArthroCare then reported these shipments as sales enabling the company to meet or exceed internal and external earnings forecasts. DOJ

March 12, 2015

The New Jersey Bureau of Securities obtained a default judgment totaling more than $23 million in restitution, disgorgement, and civil penalties against Branded Marketing LLC (also known as, its successor company Branded Marketing, Inc., and its President and CEO, Richard Jackowitz, and affiliated company IT Connect, Inc., for their role in an investment scam that raised more than $4 million from unsuspecting investors. NJ
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