Securities

  • August 30, 2016

    AstraZeneca Will Pay $5.5M To SEC Over FCPA Claims

    AstraZeneca PLC agreed Tuesday to pay $5.5 million to the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission to settle claims it violated the Foreign Corrupt Practices Act through improper payments by overseas sales staff to state-controlled health care providers in China and Russia.

  • August 30, 2016

    Platinum Energy To Pay $1.7M To End Merger Class Action

    A $1.7 million settlement of a shareholder class action challenging the 2011 acquisition of Platinum Energy Resources Inc. by Pacific International Group Holdings LLC received approval Tuesday by a Delaware chancery court judge, who also approved the payment of legal fees and expenses from the settlement fund.

  • August 30, 2016

    SEC Hands Ex-Monsanto Exec $22M For Accounting Fraud Tip

    The U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission granted a $22.4 million award to a former Monsanto Co. financial executive for reporting alleged accounting fraud around the agribusiness giant's Roundup weed killer, a lawyer for the whistleblower said on Tuesday.

  • August 29, 2016

    Hungry SEC Enforcers Find Fertile Ground In Muni Bonds

    The U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission's charges last week against 71 municipalities that self-disclosed violations in their bond offerings may have been low-hanging fruit that will help the agency boost enforcement numbers after a slow year, but experts said the actions are likely the first of many in what is now a firmly regulated market.

  • August 29, 2016

    Metals Traders Cheated Investors, Judge Rules In CFTC Suit

    The U.S. Commodity Futures Trading Commission won the remaining claims in its fraud suit against a pair of companies and their CEO whom it accused of fleecing investors by claiming to deal in precious metals when in fact they dealt in derivatives contracts, landing a trading injunction and $2.1 million in restitution.

  • August 29, 2016

    Japanese Bank Can't Escape Mt. Gox Bitcoin Dispute

    A Japanese bank must face some liability for financial losses arising from the closure of the Mt. Gox Bitcoin exchange, an Illinois federal judge ruled Friday, finding that the proposed class of customers sufficiently showed that the bank’s improper conduct led to its unjust enrichment.

  • August 26, 2016

    Ex-Basho Exec's Chancery Suit Survives Dismissal Bid

    A Delaware Chancery judge on Friday refused to dismiss derivative and individual claims against Basho Technologies Inc. related to a 2014 financing transaction, saying the corporate behavior alleged in a former executive's complaint was so abusive that normally effective defenses don’t hold up under scrutiny.

  • August 26, 2016

    NY Real Estate Investment Co. Beats RICO Suit

    A New York federal judge on Friday tossed a racketeering suit brought by an investor accusing a real estate investment management firm and its principals of duping him into investing in risky loans that collapsed in the financial crisis, saying the claims were time-barred.

  • August 26, 2016

    Investor Ends Class Action Over $461M AnchorBank Sale

    An Anchor BanCorp Wisconsin Inc. investor asked a Wisconsin federal court on Friday to end his class action accusing executives of structuring a $461 million sale to benefit themselves and shortchange investors in light of a Seventh Circuit decision earlier this month that curbs certain disclosure-only settlements.

  • August 26, 2016

    AXA Investor Fees Didn't Breach Fiduciary Duty, Judge Says

    AXA Equitable Life Insurance Co. beat two consolidated class actions challenging its allegedly excessive mutual fund management fees Friday when a New Jersey federal judge found the investors’ effort to prove the board members exercised poor oversight over the fees was marred by questionable testimony.

  • August 26, 2016

    Globus Investor Suit Lacked 'Factual Allegations,' Judge Says

    A Pennsylvania federal judge threw out a proposed securities fraud class action against medical device maker Globus Medical Inc. and four of its executives Thursday, finding the suit did not adequately allege that 2014 earnings projections fraudulently included revenue from a contract the defendants secretly planned to terminate.

  • August 26, 2016

    $3.3M Incentive Fee In $35M Occam Deal Too High, Atty Says

    A class attorney balked Friday at a proposed record-breaking $3.35 million incentive fee for one shareholder’s help in winning a $35.5 million award in a Delaware Chancery Court challenge to the Occam Networks Inc. merger with Calix Inc., suggesting instead a still-record $1 million.

  • August 26, 2016

    Scrapbookers' McDermott Malpractice Suit Now But A Memory

    McDermott Will & Emery LLP on Thursday beat a suit in Ohio federal court accusing it of committing malpractice by failing to tell defunct scrapbooking giant Antioch Co. LLC to sue its directors for breach of fiduciary duty in connection with a 2003 deal that sold the company to its employees, saying the suit would have failed anyway.

  • August 26, 2016

    Texas Oil Field Operator Beats Suit Over Cratered Value

    A Texas federal judge on Thursday tossed a class action by an investor in Harvest Natural Resources Inc. claiming the company misled investors about its financial health to keep its stock afloat, chalking up the oil field operator’s alleged deception to simple human error rather than a conspiracy to defraud shareholders.

  • August 26, 2016

    Aveo Promises Reforms In Cancer Drug Derivative Settlement

    Aveo Pharmaceuticals Inc.'s board has agreed to reform itself and the company's internal policies following an investor's derivative suit claiming it lied about the success of a clinical trial for a kidney cancer medication, according to a preliminary settlement submitted Thursday to a Massachusetts federal court.

  • August 26, 2016

    PwC Reaches Deal Amid $5.5B Taylor Bean Trial

    PricewaterhouseCoopers LLP has reached a midtrial settlement of claims brought by the trustee for Taylor Bean & Whitaker Mortgage Corp. that the accounting giant allegedly made possible a $5.5 billion fraud at the bankrupt mortgage lender, an attorney for the trustee said Friday.

  • August 25, 2016

    $62M Avon FCPA Settlement Gets Approval, Fees Cut 40%

    Attorneys for a shareholder class that reached a $62 million settlement with Avon Products Inc. last year over claims that it hid violations of the Foreign Corrupt Practices Act will get $11.2 million in attorneys’ fees under final terms approved by a New York federal judge on Thursday.

  • August 25, 2016

    $3.5B Auspex-Teva Merger Challenge Axed By Chancery

    A Delaware Chancery Court threw out a complaint from shareholders challenging the $3.5 billion Auspex Pharmaceuticals Inc. all-cash merger with Teva Pharmaceuticals Industries Ltd., finding Thursday that the investors failed to show the deal was steered by self-interested Auspex officers.

  • August 25, 2016

    Adviser Who Targeted Elderly In Ponzi Scheme Gets 5 Years

    A financial adviser convicted of running an 8-year, $4.2 million Ponzi scheme was sentenced to five years in prison Thursday after several of her victims spoke about how she selected elderly and ill people to defraud.

  • August 25, 2016

    Bankrate On Track To Settle Earnings Fraud Action For $20M

    A Florida federal judge gave preliminary approval Wednesday to a $20 million settlement of class action litigation accusing personal finance publisher Bankrate of fleecing investors by fraudulently boosting claimed revenues, inflating its stock price and creating artificial demand for a 2014 share offering.

Expert Analysis

  • Is SEC Cooperation Credit Worthwhile?

    Junaid A. Zubairi

    In many cases, self-reporting to the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission will yield substantial benefits. However, once a company decides to self-report and cooperate, it should be prepared to present evidence of a thorough internal investigation, remedial efforts and improvements to internal processes implemented as a result of misconduct, say Junaid Zubairi and Brooke Conner of Vedder Price PC.

  • REBUTTAL: Establishing Standards And Norms In Mediation

    William A. Ruskin

    A recent Law360 guest article asks whether by signing a mediation confidentiality agreement a lawyer surrenders the power to protect his client against inappropriate mediation conduct. The short response to this concern is that parties to a mediation should refuse to execute such an agreement that removes all future recourse against the mediator, no matter how egregious the mediator’s actions, says William Ruskin of Gordon Rees Scu... (continued)

  • Board Interlocks In Antitrust Enforcement Hot Seat

    Andrea Agathoklis Murino

    Recent activity by the U.S. Department of Justice and the Federal Trade Commission make clear that enforcement of Section 8 of the Clayton Act — the prohibition against interlocks between competitors — is alive and well. Board members and officers must be on alert, say attorneys with Goodwin Procter LLP.

  • How Accepting Responsibility Can Help At Sentencing

    Daniel Wenner

    The pre-sentencing conduct and sentence of Owen Li, former manager of Canarsie Capital, demonstrate the value of white collar fraudsters accepting responsibility instead of pretending they’re not caught, says Daniel Wenner of Day Pitney LLP.

  • Defining Attorney-Client Relationships In The Electronic Age

    Elizabeth Fitch

    As technology has advanced, the ways in which attorneys communicate with clients, potential clients, former clients and the public has created new and ill-defined issues relating to whether an attorney-client relationship exists. Attorneys Elizabeth Fitch and Theodore Schaer discuss the often nebulous yet hazardous concepts that could lead to malpractice issues.

  • The Evolving M&A Litigation Landscape Post-Trulia

    Daniel E. Wolf

    While the impact of the January 2016 Delaware decision in Trulia is profound, rumors that it represented the demise of M&A litigation were greatly exaggerated. Deal litigation continues, albeit in different forums, with different claims, and subject to different risk mitigation tactics, say Daniel Wolf and David Feirstein of Kirkland & Ellis LLP.

  • Questioning 2nd Circ. Analysis In Aluminum Antitrust Case

    James Robertson Martin

    The Second Circuit recently held in Aluminum Warehousing that consumers that are used as tools to manipulate a defendant’s market can pursue damage claims suffered from manipulation in that market. However, the court went on to hold, consumers that suffered the consequences of a defendant’s unlawful conduct in another market cannot. This seems a bridge too far, says James Robertson Martin of Zelle LLP.

  • 4 Reasons Law Firm Business Development Initiatives Fail

    Adam Donovan

    By understanding four common reasons why law firm business development initiatives fail, we can more accurately define success, avoid pitfalls, and improve return on investment, says Adam Donovan, senior manager of patent business strategy at Fish & Richardson PC.

  • 5 Key Takeaways From Key Energy’s FCPA Settlement

    Michael Volkov

    Key Energy had adopted a code of conduct, a Foreign Corrupt Practices Act and anti-corruption policy, and a procurement policy, but made no effort to ensure that these policies were enforced in Mexico. Companies continue to fall short on the compliance front by relying on local country managers, says Michael Volkov, a former federal prosecutor.

  • Pay-For-Delay & Stock Prices: Smoking Gun Or Damp Squib?

    Paul Greenberg

    In their July 29 response to our Law360 article critiquing the stock-price approach to assessing reverse-payment settlements, advocates of the “smoking gun” viewpoint described our position as "incorrect in theory, empirically and legally.” We disagree with this sweeping assertion, say members of Analysis Group Inc.