Blog by Bill Singer Esq WEEK IN REVIEW

April 22, 2023
In a recent FINRA regulatory settlement, it is alleged that the pro se Respondent engaged in conversion when he made payments of a customer's personal expenses "without consent." Except the AWC settlement also states that the payments were made at the "request" of the customer. It makes no sense that the cited payments were made "without consent" of the very customer who had requested the payments. All of which raises questions about FINRA's sloppy work and whether a lawyer might have prompted a different outcome for the Respondent.
On April 14, 2023, the Securities and Exchange Commission published "SEC Reopens Comment Period for Proposed Amendments to Exchange Act Rule 3b-16 and Provides Supplemental Information." Upon reading the SEC's press release, one is immediately struck by the ponderous nature of the headline about the reopening of a comment period in order to supplement previously proposed amendments. Oh my, what an exaltation of doublespeak and bureaucratese!
There's crime and then there's punishment. On Wall Street, there seems to be an abundance of the former and a dearth of the latter -- then again, that's a view of society at large these days, so, who knows, maybe it's just the zeitgeist. Be that as it may, after a federal jury convicted Defendants of a number of crimes, the District Court may have gone a tad light on some prison sentences in order to facilitate the payment of restitution to the victims. The theory being that if you put someone in prison for a number of years, that's detracting from their ability to get a job and start repayment. That may be an enlightened bit of adjudication but did it come at too high a cost for deterrence?