In line with its efforts to encourage public participation in the apprehension of financial fraud actors, the US Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) has announced awards of over $4.3 million to two whistleblowers. This latest award now adds up the entire amount awarded to whistleblowers to $719 million since 2012. So far, the agency as rewarded 112 individuals in the program.
The SEC announced it will make the payments in two different orders. The first award was $3.6 million, awarded to a whistleblower that provided vital information about misconduct that occurred abroad.
Whistleblowers were paramount to investigations
According to the SEC, the whistleblower assisted the agency to pin down those responsible for foul dealings. The whistleblower also took the risk to travel abroad to gather evidence supporting his earlier reported case.
The SEC said it will award $750,000 to another whistleblower who provided vital details that helped the investigation of ongoing fraud.
The whistleblower explained the fraudulent scheme structure and helped the investigation by attending in-person meetings. According to SEC, the activities of the whistleblower helped to understand the foundations of the fraud and how to stop their handlers on time.
Chief of the agency’s whistleblower office, Jane Norberg, commented about the activities of whistleblowers and how they have helped tremendously to prosecute fraudsters.
“Whistleblowers play an important role in helping to identify misconduct, and the assistance they provide can be integral to an investigation, she pointed out in a speech.
She further said the award given to the whistleblowers today is the effort and commitment of the agency to collaborate with anyone who would have important information leading to the prevention of financial crime and further arrest of the suspects.
SEC is focused on stopping financial crimes
This year, SEC has given more awards to whistleblowers compared to previous years. Last month alone, the commission awarded over $150 million to four whistleblowers. SEC began its whistleblower program in 2012 and started issuing awards to beneficiaries the same year.
With over $700 million awarded to whistleblowers, the commission has continued to encourage the public and remind people of the important role they can play to help stop financial crime.
The payments were made by the SEC through an investor protection program the U.S. Congress established for such purpose.
However, the SEC has assured investors that it has not taken money from the harmed investors to settle whistleblowers.
And to facilitate emerging business and entrepreneurs, the SEC has increased the crowdfunding limits.