Appellate Court Finds Misconduct by SEC and U.S. Prosecutors in Squawk Box Case; Overturns Convictions

Courtesy of Pam Martens.

Mary Schapiro, Chair of the SEC

As if we needed more evidence – the Second Circuit Appellate Court handed down a decision yesterday strongly suggesting that if you stick with the Wall Street traders’ code and steal for the house, you’re good to go.  But take money from the house and all manner of deceit will be leveraged against you to convict.  The Wall Street Code is inviolate; the order of things must be maintained at all cost.

Six Wall Street men have lost seven years of their life, their careers, underwent two jury trials which took a devastating emotional toll on themselves and their families, were convicted and sentenced – while two SEC lawyers and two Assistant U.S. Attorneys sat on deposition transcripts that could have cleared the defendants of the central charge in the case.

Who else let this travesty of justice play out: the General Counsel’s office of Merrill Lynch which sat in on those depositions and heard the testimony first hand  and John Gleeson, a Federal District Court Judge who, after the depositions surfaced shortly after sentencing and he was made aware, refused a petition for retrial.

The case is U.S. v. Kenneth Mahaffy et al; the 38-page Appellate decision was written by Judge Barrington D. Parker. The six defendants are Kenneth Mahaffy, formerly of Merrill and Citigroup’s Smith Barney; David Ghysels, formerly of Lehman Brothers; and Timothy O’Connell, formerly of Merrill;  Keevin Leonard, Robert Malin and Linus Nwaigwe, worked for the day trading firm, A.B. Watley.

Andrew J. Frisch, attorney for Kenneth Mahaffy, learned of the SEC’s deposition transcripts four days after Court sentencing, when the SEC commenced an administrative charge.  But for his tireless pursuit of justice, this corrupted process would likely have never seen the light of day. Fortunately, the men have been free on bail awaiting the Appellate decision.

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