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Financial and Investment Fraud

This archive displays posts tagged as relevant to financial and investment fraud. You may also be interested in the following pages:

Page 1 of 46

COVID Frauds of the Week: More PPP and PPE Fraudsters, and an Update

Posted  09/17/20
hundred dollar bill zoomed in
Attorney General William P. Barr announced the results of his Payroll Protection Program (PPP) Criminal Fraud Enforcement Action this week, and noted that as of August 8, 2020, over 5.2 million loans had been approved, with a total federal expenditure of over $525 billion in federal business support expenditures. The downside is that Paycheck Protection Program fraudsters have cost the government over $70 million in...

SEC Whistleblower Awards Keep Rolling In

Posted  09/17/20
a silver whistle on top of a stack of cash
Earlier this week, the SEC announced an award of more than $10 million "to a whistleblower whose information and assistance were of crucial importance to a successful SEC enforcement action."  This brings the total tally under the SEC's Whistleblower Program to $520 million in awards to 94 whistleblowers since the first award in 2012. It also marks the latest in a flood of awards this year, including the $50...

SEC Again Postpones Hearing on Controversial Whistleblower Award Rule Amendments

Posted  09/11/20
silver whistle with Securities Exchange Commission logo
For the second time, the SEC pulled the plug on hearings to consider amendments to some key rules affecting its whistleblower reward program.  Just a day before hearings scheduled for September 2, 2020, the SEC canceled them, indicating only that they would be rescheduled for a future date.  The Commission had done the same thing in fall 2019, abandoning hearings at the last minute. There are many potential...

September 4, 2020

An anonymous individual received a whistleblower reward in an unspecified amount, after providing information that caused the CFTC to open an investigation into ongoing fraudulent activity affecting individual investors.  The whistleblower provided assistance and documentation, enabling the Commission to act quickly to stop fraud that would have been difficult to detect without the whistleblower's information. CFTC

How Whistleblowers Can Report Fraud Related to Clinical Trials

Posted  09/4/20
Microscope
The COVID-19 pandemic has highlighted the importance of government-funded scientific and medical research, including clinical trials of vaccines, treatments, and more.  We are all potentially at risk if there is fraud and abuse in clinical trials and other research. Individuals with knowledge of fraud and misconduct in federal grants and clinical trials may be able to bring a whistleblower action for that research...

September 1, 2020

The SEC made a $2.5 million whistleblower award to two outsiders who submitted a whistleblower tip based on their detailed independent analysis of a company's public filings.  The whistleblowers provided helpful assistance during the investigation, and their submission ultimately led to several successful enforcement actions.  The SEC did not disclose their identity or the target of the underlying enforcement actions.  SEC

August 28, 2020

Herbalife Nutrition Ltd. will pay over $123 million to resolve claims that the US-based company violated the Foreign Corrupt Practices Act by paying bribes to Chinese officials and other state-owned entities in order to secure required direct selling licenses, improperly influence Chinese investigations into Herbalife's business, and improperly influence Chinese state-owned and state-controlled media for the purpose of removing negative media reports about Herbalife. Herbalife admitted that over the course of ten years it falsified its books and records in order to provide corrupt payments and benefits to Chinese government officials.  To resolve criminal charges, Herbalife will enter into a deferred prosecution agreement and pay a $55 million criminal penalty; to resolve civil charges by the SEC, Herbalife will pay disgorgement and interest totaling approximately $67 million.  DOJ; USAO SDNY; SEC

August 26, 2020

LA-based clothing company Ambiance Apparel and its owner Sang Bum “Ed” Noh have pleaded guilty to customs violations and tax offenses, agreeing to pay a total of $118 million, which includes $36 million in previously-seized cash.  Defendants evaded import tariffs by colluding with Asian manufacturers for the submission of invoices to CBP that fraudulently understated the value of imported clothing. The fraudulent invoices indicated payment terms by letter of credit; a second invoice for the balance of the actual price was paid by defendants by wire transfer. In less than five years, Ambiance undervalued imports by about $82.6 million and failed to pay more than $17.1 million in tariffs. In addition, defendants failed to properly report cash transactions and maintained a second set of books for cash transactions, evading nearly $17 million in taxes.  The company will be placed on probation for five years and will be ordered to undertake specific compliance procedures.  USAO CD Cal

August 19, 2020

The Bank of Nova Scotia (Scotiabank) has been ordered to pay $127.4 million to the CFTC and $60.4 million in criminal fines, forfeiture, and restitution to the DOJ for attempting to manipulate prices and spoofing in precious metals futures contracts, making false and misleading statements to investigators, and failing to comply with swap dealer conduct and supervision requirements.  The alleged misconduct occurred over the eight years ending in 2016 and involved four precious metals traders in New York, London, and Hong Kong.  From the penalty paid to the CFTC, a record-breaking $42 million will go toward resolving the price manipulation and spoofing allegations, and a record-breaking $17 million will go toward resolving the false and misleading statements allegations.  In addition to the fines, Scotiabank has entered into a deferred prosecution agreement and agreed to retain an independent monitor.  CFTC; DOJ; USAO NJ 
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