First Whistleblower Award Handed Out By CFTC

On Tuesday May 20, the U.S. Commodity Futures Trading Commission reported that it awarded an anonymous whistleblower $240,000 for a tip which helped in an investigation. The award was the first given out by the commission under the Dodd-Frank Wall Street Reform and Consumer Protection Act of 2010. The program is intended to encourage people to come forward with information about financial fraud.

Under the relatively new protections, tipsters who provide information with the CFTC, which leads to an enforcement action and a recovery exceeding $1 million, are entitled to anywhere between 10 percent and 30 percent of the amount collected. Based on these guidelines, it is estimated that the anonymous whistleblower gave information which led to a recovery of anywhere between $800,000 and $2.4 million.

While the $240,000 reward may not seem much compared to many of the other whistleblower rewards reported, the CFTC considered it a milestone achievement for the program. According to the committee, its whistleblower program is receiving more and more high quality leads and cooperation. Christopher Ehrman, who is the head of the commission’s whistleblower program, said that the amount of tips jumped from 58 in 2012 to 138 in 2013.

The tips received by the commission generally include things like allegations of market manipulation, investment scams and false advertisements. They are subsequently forwarded to the CFTC’s enforcement division for evaluation and disposition.

According to the commission, they have denied more than 24 potential claimants, mostly because of insufficient information or evidence.  If the whistleblower does not provide strong enough data, the lead will not be pursued, and no money will be recovered or subsequently awarded.

The qui tam attorneys at Begelman & Orlow, P. C. have more than 115 years of combined experience litigating whistleblower cases throughout the U.S. If you have knowledge of any fraudulent activity or wrongdoing, contact the whistleblower lawyers at Begelman & Orlow, P. C..

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