Today, the SEC Office of the Whistleblower announced that it has issued more than $400 million in awards to whistleblowers since issuing its first award in 2012. The announcement came in connection with a $27 million award to a whistleblower who alerted the SEC to misconduct occurring, in part, overseas. According to the SEC’s order determining the whistleblower award, the whistleblower’s assistance was so critical to the success of the enforcement action that the Commission departed from its Preliminary Award Determination (which the whistleblower did not contest) to increase the size of the award. The order states:
Read more here.
After considering the administrative record, we choose to depart from the Preliminary Determination’s recommendation and increase the award to Claimant to Redacted of the monetary sanctions collected or to be collected in the Covered Action, for a payout of more than $27,000,000…
In reaching that determination, we positively assessed the following facts: (i) Claimant’s information was significant as it allowed Commission staff to uncover hidden conduct occurring, in part, overseas; (ii) Claimant provided a substantial amount of ongoing assistance and cooperation by meeting with staff numerous times and providing relevant documents and critical investigative leads that advanced the investigation and saved the Commission a significant amount of time and resources; (iii) Claimant’s information helped the Commission further significant law enforcement interests by enabling the Commission to bring an action addressing a particular form of misconduct Redacted ; and (iv) Claimant repeatedly and strenuously raised Claimant’s concerns internally. In determining the appropriate award percentage, we also considered whether Claimant unreasonably delayed in reporting the information to the Commission.