Corporate Defense and Disputes

Important developments in U.S. securities law, white collar criminal defense, regulatory enforcement and other emerging issues impacting financial services institutions, publicly traded companies and private investment funds

Tag Archives: US Supreme Court

Supreme Court Reaffirms Personal-Benefit Requirement for Insider Trading

The Supreme Court confirmed today that the “personal benefit” required to establish a claim for insider trading can consist of making a gift of material, nonpublic information to a family member or friend and that an exchange of “something of a pecuniary or similarly valuable nature” is not required. The decision in Salman v. United … Continue Reading

California Federal Court Holds That U.S. Securities Laws Do Not Apply to Unsponsored, Unlisted ADRs

The U.S. District Court for the Central District of California held on May 20, 2016 that the federal securities laws do not apply to U.S. transactions in unlisted, unsponsored American Depositary Receipts (ADRs) for a foreign issuer’s shares. The decision in Stoyas v. Toshiba Corporation also held that principles of international comity and forum non … Continue Reading

Supreme Court’s Manning Decision Leaves Questions Unanswered

The U.S. Supreme Court’s decision yesterday in Merrill Lynch v. Manning clarified the scope of federal jurisdiction under the Exchange Act in certain important respects, but also left open critical issues that may arise in future cases.  Although the Court rejected federal jurisdiction in resolving the sole issue that was before it, the Court also … Continue Reading

Supreme Court Clarifies Jurisdiction Under Securities Exchange Act

On May 16, 2016, the U.S. Supreme Court ruled that the provision of the Securities Exchange Act of 1934 granting federal district courts exclusive jurisdiction over suits brought to enforce the Exchange Act is subject to the same jurisdictional test established by the general federal-question jurisdictional statute. The Court held in Merrill Lynch v. Manning … Continue Reading

Supreme Court To Resolve Circuit Split Over Bank Fraud Statute

On Monday April 25, the U.S. Supreme Court granted certiorari in United States v. Shaw, a closely watched case out of the Ninth Circuit addressing the bank fraud statute, 18 U.S.C. § 1344.  That statute has two subsections, the first of which criminalizes schemes “to defraud a financial institution.”  The question presented in Shaw is … Continue Reading

Supreme Court Clarifies That Untainted Assets Cannot Be Frozen Pre-Trial By The Government

Last week the Supreme Court further clarified the procedures and limits regarding the government’s ability to freeze assets in connection with criminal prosecutions. Following the 2014 decision in Kaley v. United States, where the Court ruled (in the government’s favor) that a defendant could not challenge the legality of a pre-trial asset seizure by contesting … Continue Reading

Supreme Court Denies Review of Second Circuit Insider-Trading Case

The Supreme Court today refused to grant review of the Second Circuit’s restrictive insider-trading decision in United States v. Newman.  The Government, through the Solicitor General, had asked the Supreme Court to clarify the nature of the “personal benefit” that a tipper must receive in order to create liability for insider trading.  But the Supreme … Continue Reading

Government Seeks Supreme Court Review In Second Circuit Insider-Trading Case

After months of will-he-or-won’t-he speculation about whether the U.S. Solicitor General would ask the Supreme Court to review the Second Circuit’s restrictive insider-trading decision in United States v. Newman, the question has now been answered. The Government filed a certiorari petition on July 30, 2015 asking the Supreme Court to clarify the nature of the “personal … Continue Reading

Supreme Court Clarifies the Standard Governing Removal of Class Action Cases to Federal Court

The US Supreme Court ruled on Monday that class action defendants need not provide evidentiary submissions in support of their attempts to remove a case from state to federal court.  Rather, they need only include in their notice of removal a “plausible allegation” that the amount in controversy exceeds the jurisdictional threshold. In Owens v. … Continue Reading

Justices Scalia and Thomas Amenable to Reexamining Deference to SEC Statutory Interpretations

Like Prince Charming searching for the foot that fit the glass slipper, Justice Scalia recently issued a statement advising that he and Justice Thomas would be receptive to granting certiorari to a petition properly presenting the issue of whether, in a criminal context, a court should grant deference to an administrative agency’s statutory interpretation.  And, … Continue Reading

Supreme Court May Reject Argument that Opinion Statements Are Actionable Simply Because False

During oral arguments in Omnicare v. Laborers District Council last week, the Supreme Court appeared to signal a rejection of the Sixth Circuit Court of Appeals’ position that a sincerely held statement of opinion or belief may be actionable under the Securities Act of 1933 simply because it was incorrect. The case concerns statements such … Continue Reading

Presumption of Reliance Survives in Securities Cases, But Defendants Can Dispute Price Impact at Class Certification

The U.S. Supreme Court today declined to abandon the efficient-market theory, with its rebuttable presumption of reliance that enables securities class actions to proceed without proof of actual reliance on alleged misrepresentations or omissions. However, the Court’s ruling in Halliburton Co. v. Erica P. John Fund, Inc. allows defendants to try to show at the … Continue Reading
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