Website Heading

CALIFORNIA CORPORATE & SECURITIES LAW

Criminal Conviction Of De Facto Officer Does Not Preclude D&O Coverage

After a two week trial in 2013, a jury convicted Mitchell J. Stein, a lawyer, of mail, wire, and securities fraud based on evidence that he fabricated press releases and purchase orders to inflate the stock price of his client Signalife, Inc., a publicly-traded manufacturer of medical devices.  Mr. Stein received a sentence of 204 months’ imprisonment, over…

Share on:

Why Bassam Salman Should Not Have Been Convicted

A lot of ink has been spilt on the United States Supreme Court’s decision in Salman v. United States, 137 S. Ct. 420 (2016).  In that case, the Supreme Court upheld the criminal conviction of Mr. Bassam Salman who received lucrative trading tips from an in-law, who had received the information from his brother.  The legal issue in…

Share on:

Ninth Circuit Accords Chevron Deference To The SEC, What Would Judge Gorsuch Say?

Last week, I noted that Judge Gorsuch has expressed a certain skepticism of Chevron deference.  The next day, the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals held that the Securities and Exchange Commission’s interpretation of Section 19(d)(2) of the Securities Exchange Act is entitled to Chevron deference. Sharemaster v. United States SEC, 2017 U.S. App. LEXIS 1827 (9th…

Share on:

SEC Continues To Pay Out Millions In Secrecy

Earlier this week, the Securities and Exchange Commission announced awards to three whistleblowers totaling more than $7 million.  That is about all anyone can say about the awards.  The SEC’s order is only 448 words long, including numerous occurrences of the word “redacted”.  It doesn’t name the company or describe the nature of the investment scheme. Even…

Share on:

10th Circuit Holds SEC ALJs Are Holding Office Unconstitutionally

In March 2015, I posed the following question: But if you were hailed before an unconstitutional tribunal with the ostensible authority to fine you and bar you from working, would you want a “real” court to step in and consider the constitutionality of the proceedings? Since raising that question, several respondents in administrative proceedings brought by…

Share on:

Has The SEC Paid Millions In Whistleblower Bounties To “Friends And Family”?

Earlier this month, the Securities and Exchange Commission announced yet another large whistleblower bounty.  See SEC Awards Nearly $1 Million to Whistleblower.  This brings to $136 million the total amount awarded to date by the SEC to whistleblowers.  That is a lot of money, especially since it went to only 37 individuals! Were any of those awards made to…

Share on:

SEC Takes Action Because Issuer Did Not Effect A Public Offering

Until the addition of paragraph (c) to Rule 506 three years ago, securities lawyers spent a lot of time advising their clients on how to avoid a public offering of their securities.  Thus, I found it somewhat ironic to read that the Securities and Exchange Commission had taken enforcement action against a California lawyer for not conducting…

Share on:

Why The SEC Isn’t Vegas

Last week, I wrote that the Securities and Exchange Commission is sending letters to registrants requesting information about compliance with Regulation G and Item 10(e) of Regulation S-K.  These letters request issuers to voluntarily provide information concerning their disclosures of non-GAAP financial measures.  I cautioned that registrants should read the accompanying SEC Form 1662 carefully before…

Share on:

When CEOs Read This, They May Become Less Enamored Of Delaware

In a forthcoming paper, Professors Murali Jagannathan (Binghamton University School of Management) and A.C. Pritchard (University of Michigan Law School) evaluate whether there might be  relationship between incorporation in Delaware and Chief Executive Officer turnover.  The two professors conclude that Delaware firms terminate their CEOs significantly more frequently than the average firm in their study.  They found that decisions by Delaware boards to force out…

Share on:

NASAA Releases 2015 Enforcement Report

State securities regulators serve an important local enforcement function.  In fact, state securities regulation precedes federal regulation by more than two decades.  The North American Securities Administrators Association is an association of state, provincial and territorial securities regulators from the 50 states, the District of Columbia, the U.S. Virgin Islands, Puerto Rico, Canada, and Mexico.…

Share on: