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violations 89 articles

SEC Awards Whistleblower $4.1 Million For Insider Tips

The Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) on Dec. 5 announced a whistleblower award of more than $4.1 million to a former company insider who alerted the agency to a “widespread, multi-year securities law violation.” The SEC said that after initially contacting the agency about the alleged violations, the whistleblower continued to provide important information and assistance to the SEC throughout its investigation. The whistleblower was the third awarded by the SEC in less than a week’s time. Jane Norberg, Chief of the SEC’s Office of the Whistleblower, said that whistleblowers are instrumental in helping federal regulators finding and investigating violations of securities ... Read More

OSHA: Safety Failures Led to Utility Worker deaths

Failure of their employers to follow required safety measures resulted in the deaths of three utility workers in Key Largo, Florida, January 16, federal investigators said. Elway Gray, a 34-year-old pipe layer, entered the manhole first and quickly became unresponsive, EHS Today reported. Louis O’Keefe, a 49-year-old laborer, entered the hole in an attempt to retrieve Mr. Gray when he, too, became unresponsive. Robert Wilson, a 24-year-old equipment operator, entered the hole to help his coworkers. All three men died. According to the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA), atmospheric testing inside the manhole after the accident revealed lethal levels ... Read More

So-called Ag-Gag Bill attempts To Make Agriculture Industry Whistleblowing a Crime

A new anti-whistleblower “Ag-Gag” bill was introduced in the Arkansas legislature last month, marking the fourth attempt by some of the state’s elected officials to try and make reporting wrongdoing in the agricultural industry a punishable offense. According to the Food Integrity Campaign, the proposed bill HB 1665 is also the most nefarious of the Ag-Gag bills introduced to the Arkansas legislature in recent years because it seeks to gag would-be whistleblowers not just in agriculture, but in other industries as well. The Food Integrity Campaign writes: What could make a bill designed to make it illegal to document crimes ... Read More

Texas lawmakers target ‘bad’ nursing homes

Texas lawmakers are taking aim at bad nursing homes after a report by AARP Texas revealed that the state officials were surprisingly lax when it comes to making nursing homes own up to violations. There are about 1,200 nursing home facilities in Texas. According to the report, nursing homes state officials reported 17,466 violations at state nursing homes in 2015, but only 40 resulted in enforcement actions. Of those violations, 328 were listed as serious, but the state only fined 22 of them, allowing others to skirt accountability at the expense of residents’ health, AARP Texas said. In 2016, 18,089 violations ... Read More

SEC Attempts To Fend Off Award Applications From Zombie Whistleblowers

The Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) has been fending off complaints filed by “zombie whistleblowers” – tipsters who provided the regulatory agency with information about securities violations or fraud before its whistleblower program was established under 2010’s Wall Street reform laws. According to The National Law Journal, the SEC considers award applications filed by whistleblowers before the Dodd-Frank Act was enacted as “dead on arrival.” But that hasn’t stopped some past tipsters from pressing their claims in court. One such zombie whistleblower took his dispute for an award to the U.S. Court of Appeals for the D.C. Circuit earlier this ... Read More

Whistleblower Awarded Nearly $900,000 For Providing Tips To SEC

The Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) announced an award of more than $900,000 Friday to a whistleblower who provided information that enabled the agency to take multiple enforcement actions against securities law violators and fraudsters. The award was the second the agency announced within the week. On Dec. 9, the agency announced that it had awarded a whistleblower approximately $3.5 million for providing information that resulted in an investigation and subsequent enforcement action. “With the issuance of this second award in less than one week, we hope to continue to encourage individuals to submit high-quality tips that we can leverage to enforce ... Read More

Hotline Opened For Former Wells Fargo Bankers With Retaliation Concerns

The Financial Industry Regulatory Authority (FINRA) introduced a hotline Friday for certain former Wells Fargo employees who were fired amid news that bank representatives had been opening fake, unauthorized accounts for customers. In September, federal regulators ordered the San Francisco-based bank to pay the U.S. $185 million in penalties and $5 million to customers it defrauded by pressuring employees to meet aggressive sales quotas by opening the unauthorized customer accounts. Responding to this pressure, Wells Fargo employees opened up some two million fake accounts and charged customers maintenance fees on those accounts. The bank subsequently fired about 5,300 employees for opening the accounts ... Read More

SEC Awards Whistleblower $3.5 Million

The Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) said Monday that it awarded a whistleblower approximately $3.5 million for providing information that resulted in an investigation and subsequent enforcement action. In order to protect the whistleblowers who provide inside information to the SEC of fraud and securities violations, the agency does not disclose details that could directly or indirectly reveal their identities. Confidentiality is also intended to encourage other potential whistleblowers to step forward. “Whistleblowers do a tremendous service to the investing public and we will continue to reward those who come forward with valuable tips that help us bring successful cases ... Read More

Idaho Sugar Producer Probed After Worker Suffers Severe Burn Injuries

Federal authorities are investigating an Idaho beet sugar company for safety issues after an employee was severely burned by hot sugar syrup on the job last week. According to the Twin Falls Times-News, the U.S. Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) is currently awaiting the findings of an internal investigation of the accident, which occurred inside the Amalgamated Sugar Company plant Monday, Sept. 26. Emergency workers responded to a call from the Amalgamated Sugar plant about 2:45 p.m. There they treated a 28-year-old woman with “severe burns” she received after spilling a sample container of hot syrup. The Twin Falls ... Read More

Senators Seek Federal Probe of EpiPen Maker For False Claims

Mylan, the embattled manufacturer of the lifesaving EpiPen, and CEO Heather Bresch, already under investigation for unscrupulous price hikes and shady business practices, could also find themselves facing a federal False Claims Act lawsuit before long. Three members of the Senate Judiciary Committee sent a letter to U.S. Attorney General Loretta Lynch Wednesday asking the Justice Department to investigate whether Mylan illegally wrongfully classified the EpiPen under the Medicaid Drug Rebate Program, which would allow it to repay a lower percentage of its sales to states in the form of rebates. Chairman Chuck Grassley, R-IA, and Sens. Richard Blumenthal, D-CT, and Amy Klobuchar, ... Read More