Straight Talk

The purpose of this blog is to provide education and news that will help clients through the litigation process.

|Comments Off on Indy Lawyer Suspended For $19M Ponzi Scheme
Indianapolis lawyer, Charles B. Blackwelder, has been suspended from the practice of law following a guilty plea to four Class B felony counts of securities fraud. He and his daughter, Cara Grumme, were accused of scamming more than 300 elderly Indiana residents of more than $19 million. The securities involved 35 residential properties located in [...] Read More
|Comments Off on Trading Fraud Scheme Ends in Guilty Verdict as One Perpetrator Eats Evidence
Steven Metro, a former managing clerk at the prestigious New York law firm Simpson Thacher & Bartlett, was the third individual to plead guilty for conducting an insider trading scheme in which evidence written on a napkin was consumed to conceal the impropriety. Metro pleaded guilty to one count of securities fraud, as well as [...] Read More
|Comments Off on Innaccurate Data Costs Virtus $16.5 Million
The Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) settled with Virtus Investment Advisers for $16.5 million, from charges stemming from publicized false performance data. the report was generated by subadviser F-­Squared, which was ultimately found to be significantly fabricated, according to a SEC statement. F-­Squared was already facing its own battles, which include filing for bankruptcy in [...] Read More
|Comments Off on SEC Fines Accountants Over Missed Red Flags In Securities Fraud Case
CPA Firm Grant Thornton, LLP and two of its partners were recently sanctioned by the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission over claims that they missed red flags when inspecting two publicly traded companies that were the focus of SEC enforcement actions due to accounting violations and other issues. An admission of wrongdoing from Grant Thornton, [...] Read More
|Comments Off on Starr Austen and Miller is Investigating Auto Service Agency’s Direct Mail Solicitation Practices
Starr Austen & Miller is investigating Auto Service Agency’s direct mail advertising practices for possible statutory violations. Auto Service Agency, based in St. Peters, Missouri, offers vehicle owners service contracts and is not affiliated with any vehicle manufacturer or individual dealer. If you’ve received a direct mail solicitation from Auto Service Agency, listing your vehicle’s [...] Read More
|Comments Off on Former JP Morgan Adviser Guilty of $20M Client Theft
In a New York federal court, a former JPMorgan Chase & Co. investment adviser has plead guilty to stealing over $20 million from clients. In addition, he has admitted to squandering funds on unprofitable trades and personal expenses. Michael Oppenheim, 49, plead guilty to embezzlement and securities fraud on November 5, 2015. He also agreed [...] Read More
|Comments Off on SEC Identifies Lack of Compliance Programs
Investment adviser firms’ growing use of outside chief compliance officers has prompted the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission to identify several that are not effectively implementing compliance programs. The Office of Compliance Inspections and Examinations has detailed the results of over a dozen examinations conducted by the SEC of investment advisers and investment companies’ CCOs. [...] Read More
|Comments Off on Fidelity Charged with Unethical Behavior
Generating fees for the firm and unregistered advisers has been deemed unethical behavior by the commonwealth of Massachusetts. According to a statement from the secretary of commonwealth, William Galvin, at least 13 unregistered Massachusetts investment advisers used Fidelity’s broker-dealer platform. Gavin said, “Fidelity served as a haven from regulatory oversight as it ignored blatant unregistered [...] Read More
|Comments Off on SEC Hammers Down on Securities Fraud, Records Highest Fines in 2015
The Securities and Exchange Commission targeted multiple types of fraudulent behavior this year as it filed a record high of enforcement actions and fines against individuals and companies, said the agency. The agency obtained $4.2 billion in penalties, resulting in a 7% increase from the previous fiscal year 2014. Kohlberg Kravis Robert & Co. took [...] Read More
|Comments Off on Adviser Access to Outside Accounts of Clients Forces SEC Hand
The Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) is cracking down on advisers who can access their clients’ employer sponsored retirement accounts. Managing director of Graydon Compliance Solutions, Kevin Woodard, has declared that the agency will closely monitor scenarios in which clients have given their advisers usernames and passwords for financial accounts that are not managed by [...] Read More