U.S. District Court – Eastern District
The court declined to dismiss a FERC enforcement action against multiple energy traders. After the Commission assessing substantial amounts in civil penalties and disgorgement based on the respondents’ engaging in “wash trades” (trades arranged to cancel each other out and carry no economic risk), FERC sought to enforce the penalties.
In an issue of first impression in this district, the court held that FERC’s action was not time-barred because the cause of action accrued 60 days after the respondents failed to pay the penalties – not at the time of the underlying violations.
Evidence was sufficient to convict a defendant for offenses related to wire fraud and money laundering, but the defendant’s wife’s convictions weren’t supported. The couple founded and led an Alexandria church, which the husband began to fund via soliciting funds from lenders, to whom he promised a high rate of return. But there was no evidence that the wife played any role in conceiving the “business model” used to solicit borrowed funds or that she knew false or misleading statements were being made to lenders. The fact that she benefited from the fraud did not put her on notice of it. The court granted her motion for acquittal.
Categories: Daily Dockets