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SEC Whistleblower Lawyer Blog

Articles Posted in SEC Whistleblower

The US Securities & Exchange Commission (SEC) recently awarded $1.7 million to two whistleblowers who provided critical information within 30 days via Form TCR (Tip, Complaint or Referral). Both provided their information in accordance with the new Securities and Exchange Act Rule 21F-9(e).  The first award saw a whistleblower receive $900,000 after providing information on a fraudulent scheme that recurrently defrauded investors. The provided evidence allowed the SEC to further a continuing investigation that ultimately led to a shutdown of operations. The whistleblower offered a significant amount of evidence that included an essential declaration.  The second whistleblower offered critical evidence of “false and misleading statements made to investors.” The individual produced documents as well as participated in interviews during the investigation. As a result, defrauded investors saw millions in returns, and the SEC awarded this individual $800,000. The US Securities & Exchange Commission (SEC) recently awarded $1.7 million to two whistleblowers who provided critical information within 30 days via Form TCR (Tip, Complaint or Referral). Both provided their information in accordance with the new Securities and Exchange Act Rule 21F-9(e). Continue reading

In yet another tip that yielded a successful investigation, the SEC awarded $500,000 to two whistleblowers who provided cruicial information. In addition to the SEC, other law enforcement agencies were involved in stopping the continuing investor fraud. The press release indicated that the individuals offered the agencies “substantial, ongoing assistance that focused the investigation.” The information saved the involved agents time and additional resources. There were multiple SEC actions as well as “a related action from another government agency.”   The SEC depends on whistleblower tips to find and/or continue investigations into securities fraud and other criminal acts that harm investors. Tips like these can fill in gaps that investigators might now otherwise discover on their own, and help bring wrongdoers to justice sooner. Payments like these are made from an investor protection fund established by Congress. The funds come from monetary sanctions paid to the SEC by those who violate the law. Information that leads to a successful SEC action can see whistleblowers awarded monies. The usual awards are between 10% and 30% in cases that net over $1M in fines and sanctions. In this case, the two whistleblowers will split the $500,000 award 50/50.In yet another tip that yielded a successful investigation, the SEC awarded $500,000 to two whistleblowers who provided cruicial information. In addition to the SEC, other law enforcement agencies were involved in stopping the continuing investor fraud.

The press release indicated that the individuals offered the agencies “substantial, ongoing assistance that focused the investigation.” The information saved the involved agents time and additional resources. There were multiple SEC actions as well as “a related action from another government agency.” Continue reading

The SEC announced yet another award to a whistleblower who helped initiate a successful enforcement action.  Jane Norberg, Chief of the SEC’s Office of the Whistleblower, stated:  “The whistleblower alerted the SEC to previously unknown conduct and thereafter provided multiple submissions, identified potential witnesses, and met with staff on several occasions. As the numerous recent awards make clear, whistleblowers like the one awarded today play an integral part in the success of the SEC’s enforcement program.”    The whistleblower will receive an award of $1.5M for providing information and assistance to the agency that led to the successful enforcement action.  Whistleblowers are awarded monies when they provide “original, timely, and credible information” to the agency that concludes with a successful enforcement action like this one. The award monies are taken from a fund established by Congress of collected financial sanctions from wrongdoers. Nothing is taken from defrauded or harmed investors. When sanctions exceed $1M, the individual may be eligible for an award ranging from 10% to 30% of the collected monies.The SEC announced yet another award to a whistleblower who helped initiate a successful enforcement action.

Jane Norberg, Chief of the SEC’s Office of the Whistleblower, stated:

“The whistleblower alerted the SEC to previously unknown conduct and thereafter provided multiple submissions, identified potential witnesses, and met with staff on several occasions. As the numerous recent awards make clear, whistleblowers like the one awarded today play an integral part in the success of the SEC’s enforcement program.”   Continue reading

A senior financial analyst at The Walt Disney Company internally reported billions of dollars of alleged financial irregularities and claims that she was harassed and retaliated against for speaking out. In 2017 she filed an SEC whistleblower complaint. Now she is suing Disney.  Sandra Kuba, the plaintiff in a lawsuit against Disney, is a certified Public Accountant (CPA) who was hired as a financial analyst for Disney Financial Services in 1999. Her complaint (link to complaint saved in downloads “Sandra Kuba…”) states that “Throughout her employment, Plaintiff worked incredibly hard and consistently received positive performance reviews.”  SEC Whistleblower Alleges Disney Overstated Revenue  In 2013, Disney promoted Kuba to the position of senior financial analyst. Kuba claims that she became aware that employees in the parks and resorts segment were systematically overstating revenue “by billions of dollars by exploiting weaknesses in the company’s accounting software.”  One of the ways Kuba alleges Disney employees did this was by “recording fictitious revenue for complimentary golf rounds or for free guest promotions.”  She also alleged that revenue for $500 gift cards was recorded at face value even though guests only paid a discounted rate of $395 for them.  Kuba alleges that she reported this wrongdoing to her supervisors but was ignored. In 2017, she emailed her allegations to the president of Walt Disney World Resort, George Kalogridis.A senior financial analyst at The Walt Disney Company internally reported billions of dollars of alleged financial irregularities and claims that she was harassed and retaliated against for speaking out. In 2017 she filed an SEC whistleblower complaint. Now she is suing Disney.

Sandra Kuba, the plaintiff in a lawsuit against Disney, is a certified Public Accountant (CPA) who was hired as a financial analyst for Disney Financial Services in 1999. Her complaint states that “Throughout her employment, Plaintiff worked incredibly hard and consistently received positive performance reviews.” Continue reading

Two whistleblowers who notified the Securities & Exchange Commission about misconduct that occurred outside of the US were rewarded by the agency today. The SEC announced that it has awarded $5M to these two overseas whistleblowers. Their information about the misconduct supported several allegations that led to an enforcement action. The whistleblowers filed a joint tip that ended up with an SEC investigation into misconduct occurring abroad that violated US securities laws. The information provided by these individuals exposed misconduct that would otherwise been more difficult for the agency to uncover. Whistleblowers from 130 countries have provided information to the SEC since its inception in 2012. US Securities violations occur from all around the world, so the SEC encourages people from outside the US from any country to submit information they believe is critical to uncovering and combating potential violations.Two whistleblowers who notified the Securities & Exchange Commission about misconduct that occurred outside of the US were rewarded by the agency today.

The SEC announced that it has awarded $5M to these two overseas whistleblowers. Their information about the misconduct supported several allegations that led to an enforcement action. Continue reading

The SEC’s Office of the Whistleblower recently awarded two individuals a total of $2.9M in payments after alerting investigators to improper conduct in two separate cases. In a press release dated February 19, 2021, the SEC announced two awards:  The first case led to a $2.2 million whistleblower award after providing investigators with quality information that resulted in an SEC enforcement action. Because of this information, the SEC was able to thwart wrongdoing and return millions of dollars to the defrauded investors. The whistleblower in the second case alerted the SEC to a fraudulent reporting scheme that led to the investigation. This whistleblower helped to identify key documents and witnesses, as well as provided other crucial evidence in the case. The SEC awarded this whistleblower $700,000 as a result.  Jane Norbeg, Chief of the SEC’s Office of the Whistleblower stated: “Both whistleblowers who received awards today raised their concerns internally and then timely reported those concerns to the Commission. The return of millions of dollars to harmed clients in one matter, and the uncovering of a fraudulent scheme in the other matter, underscore the tremendous value that whistleblowers provide.”The SEC’s Office of the Whistleblower recently awarded two individuals a total of $2.9M in payments after alerting investigators to improper conduct in two separate cases. In a press release dated February 19, 2021, the SEC announced two awards:

  • The first case led to a $2.2 million whistleblower award after providing investigators with quality information that resulted in an SEC enforcement action. Because of this information, the SEC was able to thwart wrongdoing and return millions of dollars to the defrauded investors. Continue reading

Scott Silver, Silver Law Group’s managing partner and publisher of www.secwhistleblowerlawyers.net, represented an SEC whistleblower in a $1.8 million award for providing critical information that helped the SEC recover millions of dollars for investors.  Scott Silver represented the whistleblower with Boca Raton attorney James Sallah. Both attorneys were recently interviewed for an article on Law.com and Daily Business Review.  SEC Whistleblower Complaint  The whistleblower worked as a broker at Morgan Stanley. He and others were told about the CitiFX Alpha trading program, which he recommended to clients in 2010 and 2011 believing it was a safe investment because of false and misleading statements made to him.Scott Silver, Silver Law Group’s managing partner and publisher of www.secwhistleblowerlawyers.net, represented an SEC whistleblower in a $1.8 million award for providing critical information that helped the SEC recover millions of dollars for investors.

Scott Silver represented the whistleblower with Boca Raton attorney James Sallah. Both attorneys were recently interviewed for an article on Law.com and Daily Business Review. Continue reading

On January 1st, 2021, Congress voted to amend the Securities and Exchange Act of 1934 (Exchange Act), enacting into law the following provisions:  The Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) now has statutory authority to seek disgorgement in civil enforcement actions in federal district court; The statute of limitations in certain SEC actions is now tolled while defendants are outside of the United States; and The statute of limitations for scienter-based claims is now ten years, double the previous limitations period of five.  SEC’s Disgorgement Authority Recently Litigated in Supreme Court  Before these Congressional amendments, the SEC was not expressly authorized to seek disgorgement for securities laws violations. Historically, the SEC obtained disgorgement under the legal theory of “equitable relief,” but recent challenges in court questioned its validity.  Congress’ amendment of the Exchange Act was a direct response to recent Supreme Court decisions Kokesh and Liu, in which the Supreme Court questioned and ultimately limited the SEC’s ability to obtain disgorgement. The SEC publicly criticized these decisions, noting that since the Kokesh decision in 2017, the SEC has lossed out on more than $1 billion in disgorgement – recovered funds that could have otherwise been partially awarded to SEC whistleblowers. On January 1st, 2021, Congress voted to amend the Securities and Exchange Act of 1934 (Exchange Act), enacting into law the following provisions:

  • The Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) now has statutory authority to seek disgorgement in civil enforcement actions in federal district court;
  • The statute of limitations in certain SEC actions is now tolled while defendants are outside of the United States; and
  • The statute of limitations for scienter-based claims is now ten years, double the previous limitations period of five.

Continue reading

On December 1, 2020, the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) announced that two whistleblowers had been awarded over $6 million for providing information and assistance that led to a successful enforcement action.  The SEC’s press release called the whistleblowers’ assistance substantial and stated that they provided it to the SEC and another government agency. Their assistance included providing documents, taking part in interviews, and identifying individuals involved in the misconduct.  Jane Norberg, Chief of the SEC’s Office of the Whistleblower said “The whistleblowers’ information led to multiple successful government actions related to a complex scheme involving several individuals and tens of millions of dollars in ill-gotten gains. Today’s award demonstrates the significant contributions whistleblowers make to investigations that can save the SEC and other government agencies substantial time and resources.”On December 1, 2020, the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) announced that two whistleblowers had been awarded over $6 million for providing information and assistance that led to a successful enforcement action.

The SEC’s press release called the whistleblowers’ assistance substantial and stated that they provided it to the SEC and another government agency. Their assistance included providing documents, taking part in interviews, and identifying individuals involved in the misconduct. Continue reading

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