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The Commodity Futures Trading Commission is a federal entity responsible for enforcing the laws and regulations set forth in the Commodity Exchange Act. Individuals and entities accused of fraud and other wrongdoing under current laws face serious consequences. The firm of Farar & Lewis LLP stands ready to represent those facing charges and provide practical counsel about how to proceed.
How Does the CFTC Work?
The CFTC is charged with investigations and taking action in cases where illegal trading activities appear to be taking place. The investigation may have to do with any type of domestic or international trading. Swaps, futures, and commodities trading are a few examples that fall under the eye of the CFTC. Another example is when firms do reverse mergers, or take advantage of reverse merger shells, and then conduct illegal/unethical transactions.
The process of investigating and bring charges involves working closely with the public and a number of government organizations. The Department of Justice and the US Attorney’s Office are prime examples. State governmental agencies may also be involved in the investigations. International governments may also be consulted if the activity involves trades other than domestic ones. Private businesses and even individuals may be sources of information about the alleged fraudulent activity. Along with action taken by the CFTC, the results may also open the defendant to the possibility of criminal and civil action.
Possible Penalties to the Defendant
Being the target of an investigation by the CFTC is nothing to take lightly. That investigation may lead to substantial fines, a full criminal investigation, or a multiplicity of civil actions, up to and including stiff penalties. In terms of operation, the firm or financial professional who is under investigation may be unable to continue conducting business until the matter is resolved. That means facing possible restriction or suspension. Depending on the severity of the charges and the outcome, a permanent loss of the right to trade may occur.
The status of the defendant’s assets may also be in question. It’s not unusual for assets to be frozen until the matter is resolved. While those assets are frozen, it may be difficult to continue operating your firm, or to manage your personal finances responsibly. Never assume that some of your assets are out of reach. Many people find out too late that money and other financial assets they thought were exempt could in fact be seized.
If found guilty, those assets may be used to fulfill the terms of an order restitution. A prison sentence for convicted defendants is not out of the question.
Why a CFTC Subpoena Should Not Be Ignored
Should you receive a subpoena from the CFTC is received, the last thing you want to do is ignore it. The best move is to hire a lawyer immediately. You have the right to have legal counsel present at any time when you are questioned. A commodity trading charge defense lawyer will be aware of what CFTC actions are in compliance with current laws and will ensure your rights are protected.
Do not assume everything will work out in the end. Contact the team at Farar & Lewis LLP today and arrange for a consultation. Prompt attention to the pending charges could save your career or business.