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Securities

  • June 12, 2019

    1st Circ. Sinks Settlement Payout Claims Against Lexington

    Lexington won't have to face claims that it conspired with other insurers to misrepresent the amount that three people would receive in settlement agreements, a First Circuit panel ruled late Tuesday, saying payments to brokers that came out of the settlements were industry practice and baked into the deals.

  • June 12, 2019

    Investors Ask 11th Circ. To Revive Ocwen Omissions Suit

    Investors tried Wednesday to revive a securities fraud class suit accusing Ocwen Financial Group of issuing misleading statements about its regulatory compliance, but an Eleventh Circuit panel appeared skeptical that the statements in question were nothing more than nonactionable corporate puffery.

  • June 12, 2019

    Exxon Stripped Of Most Defenses In NY AG's Climate Case

    A New York state court judge on Wednesday dismissed most of Exxon Mobil’s defenses in a lawsuit brought by the state attorney general’s office that accuses the energy giant of defrauding investors by hiding climate change risks from them.

  • June 12, 2019

    NJ Man Gets 2 Years For $1.1M Wellness Co. Microcap Fraud

    A federal judge in Trenton sentenced a New Jersey man to 25 months in prison on Wednesday over his admitted $1.1 million scheme to defraud investors in a microcap company that purported to be a "wellness social community" for people and animals.

  • June 12, 2019

    Wellness Co. CEO Pleads Guilty To Penny Stock Fraud

    A Chicago wellness company CEO pled guilty to securities fraud in Illinois federal court Tuesday in the government’s suit over penny stock manipulation, less than a year after the executive settled a suit with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission over similar allegations.

  • June 12, 2019

    Calls, Texts Don't Confirm UBS Insider Dealing, Jury Told

    The lawyer for a former UBS compliance officer accused by the FCA of providing insider information to her day trader friend told a London jury on Wednesday that the actions of his client cannot be linked to the trades at the heart of the charges, calling the case purely circumstantial.

  • June 11, 2019

    Silicon Valley's US Attorney Makes A Bid To Innovate

    In his first six months as U.S. attorney, David Anderson has switched up how the Northern District of California handles cases in a bid to increase efficiency in prosecuting everything from cryptocurrency schemes to trade secret theft and beyond, Anderson told Law360 on Tuesday.

  • June 11, 2019

    Treasury Blacklists Syrian Luxury Developer For Assad Ties

    The U.S. Department of the Treasury on Tuesday slapped sanctions on a Syrian luxury developer and his business empire, which includes the Four Seasons Damascus, in a bid to choke out financial assistance to Syrian President Bashar al-Assad’s regime.

  • June 11, 2019

    Feds Say Taped Calls Are Fair Game In Oil Bribery Case

    Prosecutors said Monday that a Florida man accused of bribing PetroEcuador officials can't claim to have lawyered up before he was secretly recorded by an informant because the recordings dealt with a crime that hadn't yet been committed.

  • June 11, 2019

    Hecla Mining Sued Over Unprofitable $462M Gold Mines

    Investors in a gold mining operation filed a proposed class action in New York federal court Tuesday alleging that $462 million in new mines the company bought in Nevada that were supposed to be lucrative have turned out to be duds, driving down stock prices and losing the company millions.

  • June 11, 2019

    $35.5M Deal Reached In REIT-Manager Merger Suit

    A proposed $35.5 million deal was made public Tuesday that would settle an investor suit in Delaware Chancery Court against the directors of AGNC Investment Corp. that challenged payments made to and the $562 million purchase of AGNC's management company in 2016.

  • June 11, 2019

    Platinum Judge Won't Toss Case, May Limit Feds' Closings

    The judge overseeing the securities fraud trial of the former top executives of Platinum Partners on Tuesday said he intends to deny their midtrial bids to escape the charges, but indicated he was likely to preclude the government from arguing that the hedge fund overvalued its assets.

  • June 11, 2019

    Signet Can't Duck Investor Suit Over Harassment Statements

    A New York federal judge on Tuesday rejected Signet Jewelers Ltd.'s argument that a recent Second Circuit ruling made statements in a corporate code of conduct inactionable, keeping alive investors' allegations of false assurances about a harassment-free workplace.

  • June 11, 2019

    Life Time Fitness Stock Tipster Gets Year In Prison

    The lead tipster in an insider trading scheme based on Life Time Fitness Inc.'s planned take-private acquisition got sentenced Tuesday to one year and one day in prison.

  • June 11, 2019

    3 Firms Compete For Lead In AT&T Stock-Drop Suit

    In a tight race for lead counsel and lead plaintiff in a proposed class action accusing AT&T Inc. of lying to investors about the growth of its DirecTV Now service, Pomerantz LLP, The Rosen Law Firm PA and Motley Rice LLC pushed back against several competing bids.

  • June 11, 2019

    Cognizant Says It Doesn't Belong In Investors' Bribery Suit

    The government's ongoing litigation over an alleged Indian bribery scheme names two former Cognizant Technology Solutions Corp. executives but not the company itself, so Cognizant should be dismissed from investors' similar lawsuit, the company told a New Jersey federal court Monday.

  • June 11, 2019

    High Court Asked To Decide If Puerto Rico Fed Board Is Legal

    The government has asked the U.S. Supreme Court to override a First Circuit ruling that the federal board overseeing Puerto Rico's financial overhaul was unconstitutionally appointed, saying the ruling calls 200 years of territorial government into question.

  • June 11, 2019

    Med. Device Co.'s Inflated IPO Hurt Shareholders, Suit Says

    A shareholder has sued a medical device manufacturer in a proposed class action in California federal court, claiming the company misled investors at its initial public offering about its ability to manage a larger sales force and update its manufacturing facilities, leading to its stock price dropping by a third.

  • June 11, 2019

    China's Huatai Seeks To Raise $2B On London Exchange

    Chinese broker Huatai Securities on Tuesday revealed a price range for a stock offering that could raise $2 billion on the London Stock Exchange, seeking to become the first Chinese company to list shares in the U.K. through a program that links both countries' capital markets.

  • June 11, 2019

    FBI 'Engineered' Bribery Case In Haiti, Jury Hears

    Undercover agents with the Federal Bureau of Investigation pressured two men to divulge a bribery scheme in Haiti to fund an $84 million port project, but never proved that any such conspiracy existed, lawyers for the men told a federal jury in Boston on Tuesday as a weeklong trial began.

  • June 11, 2019

    Investors Have Slim Legal Path When Digital Coins Vanish

    Cryptocurrencies are already considered risky investments because of their volatility, but investors could face a whole new set of legal risks if cybercriminals steal their digital assets.

  • June 11, 2019

    Brokerage Firm Fights 'Draconian' SEC Bid For $23M Penalty

    Alpine Securities Corp. on Monday fiercely challenged a bid by the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission to secure a $22.7 million penalty against it for improperly filed suspicious activity reports, telling a New York federal court that the SEC was unfairly "seeking a corporate death penalty."

  • June 11, 2019

    SEC Says NFL Players’ Adviser Must Pay Up After 2017 Deal

    The U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission asked a Florida federal judge Monday to enforce a settlement between the agency and a former investment adviser over his alleged sale of unregistered, illiquid stock to NFL players, saying the payment deadline has long passed.

  • June 11, 2019

    Ex-Deutsche Banker Helped Rig Euribor For Profit, SFO Says

    A former Deutsche Bank trader conspired with other bankers to rig key benchmark interest rates to rip off the bank's trading partners by gaining a dishonest edge on huge financial deals, Serious Fraud Office prosecutors told a London jury on Tuesday.

  • June 10, 2019

    Mass., NJ Say Real Estate Empire Sold Unregistered Securities

    Massachusetts, New Jersey and other states on Monday accused an Illinois man and his real estate investment company of selling tens of millions of dollars of unregistered securities in what Massachusetts called “a monumental and byzantine investment empire.”

Expert Analysis

  • Despite TurnKey, SEC Will Try To Regulate Most Digital Assets

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    A careful reading of the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission's new digital assets framework suggests that the TurnKey no-action letter — issued on the same day — is a rare exception to the SEC's general approach, say Deborah Meshulam and Benjamin Klein of DLA Piper.

  • Series

    Judging A Book: Conrad Reviews 'The Jury Crisis'

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    In "The Jury Crisis," jury consultant and social psychologist Drury Sherrod spotlights the vanishing jury trial, providing a fascinating canary-in-the-coal-mine warning for lawyers, litigants and society at large, says U.S. District Judge Robert Conrad of the Western District of North Carolina.

  • A Reminder To Address Sanctions Compliance Shortfalls

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    The sanctions enforcement action and major settlement with Standard Chartered highlights U.S. and U.K. regulators’ continued focus on compliance, and their specific attention to the lapses in internal controls that led to the alleged violations, say attorneys with Paul Hastings.

  • Revamping Your Approach To Client Development

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    As a former general counsel for both public and private companies, my advice to law firm attorneys who want to attract and keep clients is simple — provide certain legal services for free, says Noel Elfant, founder of General Counsel Practice.

  • SEC Has Been Busy In FY 2019

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    Despite enduring the long government shutdown, the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission’s Division of Enforcement filed more cases in the first six months of this fiscal year than in the same period last year, suggesting enforcement activity will remain vigorous throughout 2019, say attorneys at Covington & Burling.

  • Highlights From 'SEC Speaks' 2019

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    At the SEC Speaks conference this week, leadership and staff from the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission showcased last year's successes and outlined 2019 initiatives, providing practical guidance for practitioners before the SEC, say attorneys with Perkins Coie.

  • Opinion

    China Agritech Should Apply To State Class Actions

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    While a New York federal court recently ruled that the U.S. Supreme Court's decision in China Agritech v. Resh limits successive class actions only when they are federal claims, state courts should instead follow the California Court of Appeal's approach to this issue, say attorneys at Haynes and Boone.

  • What Lawyers Must Know Before Acting As Escrow Agents

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    The moment an attorney agrees to serve as an escrow agent for a client, the attorney assumes some of the most important obligations in the legal profession. Significantly, these obligations potentially extend to third parties who are not clients, say Scott Watnik and Michael Contos of Wilk Auslander.

  • It's Wise To Be Wary Of Audit 'Dialogue' With PCAOB

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    While we assume the Public Company Accounting Oversight Board is acting in good faith by inviting companies whose audits are subject to inspection to engage in a dialogue with the inspections staff, such dialogue could be a gateway to enforcement activity, say attorneys at Stinson Leonard.

  • Freelance Attorneys Are An Asset To In-House Legal Teams

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    With recent technological advances and a broader acceptance of flexible work arrangements, the opportunity for freelance attorneys is greater than ever, as is the value that this freelance workforce can create for companies, says Ben Levi of InCloudCounsel.

  • Why PE Funds Should Consider Qualified Opportunity Zones

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    The qualified opportunity zone program has largely focused on real estate, but private equity funds are uniquely positioned for QOZ investment in operating and startup businesses, as long as funds understand how program requirements may affect deals, say Alexandre Denault and Ira Stechel at Akerman.

  • How Rebuilding America's Infrastructure Is Going So Far

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    Despite piecemeal legislative efforts, little has been done in two years to further President Donald Trump’s promise to rebuild America's crumbling infrastructure — but a federal infrastructure bill may be on the horizon, say attorneys at Jones Day.

  • 4 Key Tech Issues CFTC Is Tracking

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    Last month, the U.S. Commodity Futures Trading Commission's technology advisory committee provided valuable insight into the CFTC's willingness to facilitate technological innovations affecting the commodity and derivative markets and regulation, say attorneys at Reed Smith.

  • Opinion

    Time For More Interlocutory Review Of MDL Court Decisions

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    Increasing the availability of appellate review for multidistrict litigation court decisions on an interlocutory basis could provide valuable guidance to MDL courts and increase their efficiency in resolving cases, says Douglas Smith of Kirkland & Ellis.

  • 5 Principles For Responding To Government Investigations

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    While not every government-issued subpoena will lead to a multiyear probe, criminal fines, forfeiture and disgorgement — like the U.S. government’s recently settled bribery investigation into Mobile TeleSystems — five key fundamentals can provide an instrument to triage and resolve such inquires on more favorable terms, says Holly Drumheller Butler of Miles & Stockbridge.

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