SEC Admin Judges 'Likely Unconstitutional', NY Judge Says

Law360, New York (August 12, 2015, 11:13 AM EDT) -- A New York federal judge on Wednesday blocked a U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission in-house case against a former Standard & Poor’s Ratings Services executive, saying the agency's process for appointing judges is "likely unconstitutional."

In an order granting Barbara Duka’s motion for a preliminary injunction, District Judge Richard M. Berman said Duka was likely to succeed on her claims that the SEC violated the Appointments Clause of the Constitution because its administrative judges are not hired by the agency’s commissioners themselves.

Judge Berman said he was persuaded in part by the decisions of Georgia District Judge Leigh Martin May, who...

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