SEC Hands Whistleblower $17M for Juicy Tip

Bloomberg, InsideCounsel, Law360, The Wall Street Journal, The Washington Post, ThinkAdvisor, Washington Examiner
June 9, 2016

Jordan A. Thomas comments on recent SEC whistleblower case involving record settlement figure

The U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission has awarded $17 million—its second largest award yet—to a former company employee whose detailed tip gave the regulator a major leg up in an investigation and enforcement proceeding. The award was the largest announced since a September 2014 payout of more than $30 million.

The anonymous tipster was represented by Labaton Sucharow LLP, which has for several years dedicated a practice group to those seeking to flag concerns to the government. Jordan A. Thomas, Chair of Labaton Sucharow’s Whistleblower Practice, helped the whistleblower approach the SEC with the information.

“My client blew the whistle when others in the financial services industry were content to remain silent and allow investors to be harmed, ” Thomas said in a statement. “In the coming years, I predict that many of the SEC’s largest and most significant cases will be the result of courageous whistleblowers. This is just the beginning.”

“The financial services industry has always been a high-priority for the SEC,” Thomas said. “What is different today is that the SEC staff is a more sophisticated cop, with powerful new tools to detect, investigate, and prosecute wrongdoers.”

Thomas continued, "Each significant monetary award raises the profile of the SEC whistleblower program and the number of people willing to come forth. It's a good day for the program. It rewarded someone for having the courage to speak up."