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Commodities Fraud Lawyer

If you’re a whistleblower seeking a CFTC whistleblower lawyer to represent and protect you through aggressive action and help you obtain awards under the CFTC whistleblower program, look no further than Kohn, Kohn & Colapinto LLP.

Kohn, Kohn and Colapinto’s CFTC whistleblower attorneys have over 30 years of experience representing and protecting whistleblowers in cases involving complex financial and commodities fraud in the commodities markets. Our team of whistleblower attorneys have fought tough CFTC whistleblower cases involving market manipulation schemes, spoofing, commodities futures, commodity options, swap trading markets, derivatives, international foreign corrupt practices and other CFTC violations.

We currently represent CFTC whistleblowers under the confidential and “anonymous” whistleblower protection provisions of the Commodity Exchange Act and work closely with enforcement officials. If you believe you’re eligible for a CFTC whistleblower award, waiting can greatly reduce your chances of getting an award and protecting yourself. Get in touch with a Kohn, Kohn and Colapinto CFTC whistleblower lawyer today for a confidential case evaluation.

CFTC Whistleblower Program

The CFTC whistleblower reward program, established in 2010 under the Dodd-Frank Act, pays whistleblower awards to eligible individuals who voluntarily provide the CFTC with “original information” on violations of the Commodity Exchange Act that leads to a successful enforcement action resulting in monetary sanctions exceeding $1,000,000. To implement the law, the Commodity Futures Trading Commission has created an Office of the Whistleblower. This office publishes extensive information about the CFTC whistleblower program on-line.

What is Considered “Original Information” in a CFTC case?

“Original information” is information not already known to the Commission that is derived from:

  • Your independent knowledge (information in your possession that is not generally known or available to the public), or
  • Your independent analysis (your examination and evaluation of information that may be publicly available but which reveals information that is not generally known).

Also, if the Commission received the same information previously from someone else, your information will not be considered original information unless you can show that you were the “original source” of the information.

The CFTC and SEC whistleblower programs are nearly identical in how they process whistleblower reward claims. The two agencies often cooperate on investigations.

Recent CFTC Whistleblower Case

  • Alex "Sasha" Chepurko Qui Tam and False Claims Act Whistleblower

    Alex Chepurko was just 21 years old when he faced off against a $100 million nationwide criminal enterprise. The first whistleblower to simultaneously file claims under the qui tam provisions of the False Claims Act, Dodd-Frank Act, and IRS whistleblower law, the lead prosecutor called him “the hero” for documenting numerous criminal violations.

    In April 2020, Chepurko obtained a $69.6 million judgment on behalf of the United States under the False Claims Act. His claim to obtain a whistleblower award from the Government is still pending.  In 2018, CBS TV profiled his case in their show Whistleblower.

CFTC Whistleblower Award

Rewards under the program are mandatory for qualified whistleblowers and are in the range of 10 to 30% of the collected proceeds. Employers cannot retaliate against whistleblowers or encumber potential whistleblowers from communicating with the CFTC.

To be eligible for a whistleblower award, an individual (or group of individuals) must first submit a Form TCR – Tip, Complaint, or Referral. The Form TCR may be submitted electronically via the website, or by fax or mail. Whistleblowers who live outside of the U.S. can also hire a CFTC whistleblower lawyer to assist in filing their Dodd-Frank Act or Commodity Exchange Act case.

A whistleblower eligible for an award can be any individual who sends the Commission a Form TCR containing information about a potential violation of the Commodity Exchange Act. Examples range from a corporate officer or insider, to a trader or market observer, to an investor or fraud victim. A company or another entity is not eligible to be a whistleblower.

Whistleblowers can appeal a Final Order of the Commission regarding their award claim to an appropriate federal court of appeals no later than 30 days after the Final Order is issued.

File Anonymously for an CFTC Award

If you would like to report fraud in commodities markets or violations of commodities laws under the CFTC whistleblower program, we suggest you contact the Kohn, Kohn & Colapinto whistleblower law firm and speak with a CFTC whistleblower lawyer. You can file for an award claim anonymously but in order to do so, you must be represented by counsel.

Whether or not you seek anonymity, the Commission is dedicated to protecting your identity. The Commission will not disclose your identity in response to requests under the Freedom of Information Act. As a general rule, the Commission treats information learned during the course of an investigation – including the identity of sources – as non-public and confidential.

If you are being retaliated against for reporting fraud or misdoing, Dodd-Frank protections provide whistleblowers with strong protection against retaliation. It is against the law for an employer “discharge, demote, suspend, threaten, harass, directly or indirectly, or discriminate against, a whistleblower” for engaging in a protective activity, such as reporting fraud. If retaliation is occurring, whistleblowers are eligible to file for relief, such as back and front pay, as well as compensation for legal fees and litigation costs.

Latest from Our Blog

  • December 2, 2022

    Each year the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) Office of the Whistleblower releases an Annual Report to Congress detailing the activities of the highly successful SEC Whistleblower Program. The annual report for the 2022 Fiscal Year (FY 2022), which ended on September 30, reveals that the SEC Whistleblower Program had a record-setting fiscal year. The SEC received a record 12,300 whistleblower tips in FY 2022 and issued 103 whistleblower awards totaling approximately $229 million. Here are some key takeaways from the report: SEC Whistleblower Program Continues Success of Record-Shattering FY 2021 “Fiscal Year (FY) 2022 continued to build on the record-breaking success of FY 2021 for the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission’s Whistleblower Program,” the report begins. In fact, FY 2021 was not just a record-breaking year but a record-shattering one. That year, the SEC received a record 12,200 whistleblower tips and issued a record $564 million in whistleblower awards to a record 108 individuals. Over the course FY 2021, the whistleblower program issued more awards than in all previous years combined. The SEC Whistleblower Program’s Annual Report for FY 2022 shows that FY 2021 was not a fluke. In FY 2022 the SEC received a new record 12,300 whistleblower tips. It also once again issued over 100 whistleblower awards. While the overall monetary amount awarded to whistleblowers dipped, the difference can almost entirely be attributed to two $100 million-plus awards issued by the ...

  • November 28, 2022

    On November 28, the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) issued a $20 million whistleblower award to an individual whose disclosure contained “new and critical information that led to the success of an enforcement action,” according to the SEC. "Today’s whistleblower played a crucial role in the ultimate success of the enforcement proceeding," said Creola Kelly, Chief of the SEC’s Office of the Whistleblower. "Whistleblowers can help advance existing investigations in meaningful ways when their information saves the agency time and resources, and when their contributions allow SEC staff to better understand complicated issues." Through the SEC Whistleblower Program, qualified whistleblowers, individuals who voluntarily provide the SEC with original information that leads to a successful enforcement action, are entitled to an award of 10-30% of the sanctions collected by the SEC in the case. The SEC weighs a number of factors in determining the exact percentage to award a whistleblower. In this case, the SEC “considered that the whistleblower provided significant information and continuing assistance that helped Enforcement Division staff more quickly and efficiently investigate complex issues,” according to the agency’s press release. However, according to the award order, the SEC also negatively assessed the facts that the whistleblower “was involved for a short period and at the direction of his/her supervisor in the conduct underlying part of the Covered Action” and “delayed reporting for over two years after being ...

  • November 28, 2022

    The U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) Whistleblower Office’s Annual Report to Congress for the 2022 Fiscal Year details a record fiscal year for the agency’s highly successful whistleblower program. During the 2022 Fiscal Year, the SEC Whistleblower Program received 12,300 whistleblower tips and issued 103 whistleblower awards totaling $229 million. This was the most whistleblower tips received by the program in a fiscal year and the second-highest amount of money awarded by the program in a fiscal year. "The SEC's whistleblower program continues to be a model of success,” said whistleblower attorney Stephen M. Kohn of Kohn, Kohn & Colapinto. “Investors and taxpayers are the biggest winners. Fraudsters are the biggest losers. Congratulations to the hard working staff at the Whistleblower Office." “The significant increase in the number of whistleblower tips and awards since the program’s inception shows that the program, with its enhanced confidentiality protections, is effectively incentivizing whistleblowers to make the often difficult decision to come forward with information about potential securities-law violations,” said Creola Kelly, Chief of the Office of the Whistleblower. “Regardless of whether a whistleblower is a corporate insider, a main street investor, or an unrepresented claimant, the Commission vigorously safeguards their identity while rewarding eligible individuals who identify bad actors in our markets.” The record number of whistleblower tips received by the SEC in the 2022 Fiscal Year cover a wide-range of types of securities fraud. According to the report, ...

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