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July 2014 Archives

Fourth Anniversary of Dodd-Frank

This July marks the fourth year since the passage of the Dodd-Frank Wall Street Reform and Consumer Protection Act (“Dodd-Frank”). With the anniversary comes much debate surrounding the effects of the legislation and whether increased regulatory oversight is necessary.  A recent poll conducted by Lake Research Partners on behalf of Americans for Financial Reform and the Center for Responsible Lending indicates that most voters support tougher reforms aimed at Wall Street.

Philadelphia-based private equity firm fined for Pay-to-Play

The Securities and Exchange Commission (“SEC”) has brought its first case against a private equity firm for pay-to-play violations involving political campaign contributions to the governor of Pennsylvania and the candidate for Mayor of Philadelphia. The SEC also found that the firm, TL Ventures Inc. (“TL Ventures”) and an affiliated advisor, Penn Mezzanine Partners Management, LP, acted improperly as unregistered investment advisers.  TL Ventures neither admitted nor denied the charges but has agreed to pay almost $300,000 to settle the charges.

Pennsylvania Advisor charged with $2.5 million Fraud

RoundIcons-Free-Set-11Patricia S. Miller (“Miller”), a former representative of Investors Capital Corp. (“ICC”) and Janney Montgomery Scott (“Janney”), was indicted on charges of orchestrating a $2.5 million fraud of 20 clients beginning in 2002. According to the Criminal Complaint issued by the United States District Court for the District of Massachusetts, Miller perpetuated the fraud by promising clients high yields from participating in investment clubs. Miller then misappropriated the funds and allegedly used the funds to gamble, write checks to herself, buy groceries, pay utility bills and make loan payments.

Municipal Bond Market Fraud Uncovered in Harvey, IL

The Securities and Exchange Commission ("SEC")  has filed fraud charges in the U.S. District Court for the Northern District of Illinois against the City of Harvey, Illinois and its comptroller, Joseph Letke ("Letke"). The City of Harvey has been accused of defrauding investors through the misuse of portions of municipal bond fund proceeds, including $1.7 million of over $14 million bonds sold in all from 2008 to 2010. The funds were intended for developing a Holiday Inn hotel and conference venue for the city but years after the bonds were sold, the Holiday Inn building remains in shambles after the developer moved overseas. Meanwhile the bond money has been tied to paying payroll and operational charges, as well as Letke, $269,000 "in undisclosed payments while advising the developer" on the Holiday Inn project.

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