Sunday, January 30, 2011

SEC Charges Attorney With Misconduct in Connection with Client Exam

The SEC instituted administrative proceedings against a Greenberg Traurig partner for engaging in improper professional conduct during an SEC examination. The SEC alleges that the attorney, in the course of an SEC examination of his client NewPoint Securities LLC in April and May 2009 — altered private placement memoranda (PPMs) purportedly used in the offer and sale of securities issued by NewPoint Financial Services. The original PPMs purportedly provided to investors stated that the funds raised in the offerings would be used primarily for real estate related investments. According to the SEC, the vast majority of money raised in the offerings was misappropriated by NewPoint’s principal John Farahi.

The SEC alleges that the attorney added language to the PPMs to make it appear that it was disclosed to investors that much of the money raised by NewPoint would be loaned to Farahi. The PPMs were then produced to the SEC’s examination and enforcement staff. According to the Office of the General Counsel, Tamman knew that the language he added to the documents was not included in the PPMs actually provided to investors.

My thoughts, in two simple sentences. This is simply an accusation, and we all know that the SEC doesn't always have it's facts straight. It is certainly possible that the SEC is wrong, but assuming the allegations are true,  what loon would alter an existing document on behalf of a client and then provide it to the SEC? And, if you were such a loon, given the fact that the PPM has been distributed to third parties during the course of the offering, did you really think that it would go unnoticed by the Staff?

And one more thought. He changed the language in the existing PPM to reflect that the money raised was going to be loaned to the issuer's principal? Really? Imagine what that PPM looked like after it was altered. Dozens of pages describing the company and its business and at the end of the use of proceeds section..."loan to officer."



Monday, January 24, 2011

Breaking: FOX News Hires Olbermann

Sorry, I couldn't resist. More...

Do We Need a Department of Homeland Security or a TSA?

The simple answer is no, and given the clear evidence of all that they have taken away from us, there really should be no doubt. But read the explanation. More...

Seattle Activist Wins Case Against TSA

The entire TSA security process is drawing a great deal of attention, and more so since the introduction of evasive patdowns and the so-called "naked" body scanners. While I certainly understand the need for security at airports, the TSA seems to be more out of control with each passing day. We do have a right to be free from unreasonable searches, and given the fact that there has not been any instance of a person attempting to bring a bomb on a plane in the US in well over 10 years, constitutional lawyers have to wonder whether the invasive pat-downs and the "naked scanners" are even remotely reasonable. They can't be, since there is no credible evidence that anyone is trying to get bombs on planes in the US, and no evidence that our existing security procedures are insufficient.

No court has ruled on this issue at the moment, but the day is approaching. The activist who was arrested for video-taping
TSA agent in a public space, and for not showing his papers, has been acquitted of all charges. More...

FINRA Foundation and NFL Team Up to Help Players Avoid Investment Fraud

Hopefully this is not simply a promotional stunt. We have all hear stories of professional athletes who wind up with no money at the end of their careers. I am not sure that the problem is with financial professionals, but anything that makes an investor more aware of his investments and enables them to make informed financial decisions is good for all professionals - financial and athletic. More...

JACK LALANNE dies at age 96.

His passing has nothing to do with securities law. I just always thought he was amazing. I remember watching him on TV back in the day when we only had a black and white television. I guess today, where every TV in my home is a high definition flat screen, it makes him seem to be more of an icon. More...

Tuesday, January 18, 2011

Congressman Wants Special Treatment By The TSA

Some Congressman, including James Clyburn, are using the Tuson shooting tragedy to argue for special privileges at airports, looking to by-pass the intrusive screening processes that they set up, through the TSA, for the rest of the country. It is an amazing peek into the minds of these elected officials, who seem to believe that they are better than the rest of us, and entitled to special treatment.