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Enforcement Edge
March 1, 2023

Nothing Cryptic About It: Crypto and Private Funds High on Government’s Enforcement Priorities, as Government Also Continues to Stress Self-Reporting

Enforcement Edge: Shining Light on Government Enforcement

Day one of the ABA White Collar Crime Conference concluded with a compelling panel on securities enforcement priorities, and the message is clear: crypto and private fund activity will be focuses of government enforcement for the foreseeable future. Panelists included Andrea Griswold (Chief Counsel to the SDNY U.S. Attorney), Glenn Leon (Chief of the Fraud Section at DOJ), and Eric Bustillo (Director of the SEC’s Miami Regional Office).

All of the panelists identified crypto and private funds as an area to watch. Bustillo noted that his office identified an uptick in “pump and dump” crypto-schemes in which interest is artificially generated in an otherwise worthless token via social media, and then dumped for a substantial profit. Leon pointed to an increase in crypto-Ponzi schemes, and Griswold emphasized the enormous growth in the private fund space over the last few years, which has grown to five times its pre-2007 size. All three anticipate increased enforcement as a result.

The panel also discussed the government’s recent efforts to encourage early and complete self-reporting. Enforcement Edge will be covering that topic extensively, and will continue to do so as enforcement of the policy unfolds. Leon teased corporate resolutions in the coming days and weeks that will aid companies and practitioners in understanding the contours of the “extraordinary” cooperation and remediation required for companies seeking a declination where aggravating circumstances are present. For now, Leon would only say that the level of cooperation and remediation needs to be “above and beyond” merely “excellent” or “gold standard.”

Our coverage of the ABA White Collar Crime Conference will continue tomorrow. Tune back in then! 

© Arnold & Porter Kaye Scholer LLP 2023 All Rights Reserved. This blog post is intended to be a general summary of the law and does not constitute legal advice. You should consult with counsel to determine applicable legal requirements in a specific fact situation.