Gary Aguirre’s Sense on Cents to Chris Dodd and Barney Frank
Posted by Larry Doyle on August 5, 2010 4:22 PM |
Gary Aguirre is a great American.
To those who closely follow the markets, economy, Wall Street, Washington and global finance, Gary Aguirre needs no introduction. For those not aware of how great an American Mr. Aguirre is, let me inform you that he truly distinguished himself as an attorney both while working at the SEC and after he was unceremoniously pushed out of the SEC.
Was Aguirre let go by the SEC because he was another pawn in the Wall Street-Washington incestuous process? NO, anything but! Gary Aguirre flew in the face of the Wall Street-Washington incest and doggedly fought for justice in exposing an insider trading case against Arthur Samberg of Pequot Capital. Even after being pushed out of the SEC, Aguirre continued his pursuit of justice in the Pequot case.
What was the result? Aguirre’s utilization of the Freedom of Information Act led to his making his case. The SEC ultimately gained a $28 million settlement against Pequot and Mr. Samberg. Aguirre won a $755,000 settlement against the SEC for wrongful termination. What a giant!!
In light of the ongoing fight for transparency at the SEC, I was thrilled to receive the following email and attachment from Mr. Aguirre this morning. I compel you to take the two minutes to read, review, ponder, and ultimately share the sentiments expressed by Gary Aguirre. His words of wisdom and educated enlightenment expose the great underside of Washington’s ‘dirty pool.’
Gary Aguirre has walked the walk. Washington and all of America should follow his lead.
As stated in my attached letter to Senator Dodd and Representative Frank, the new SEC legislation would bar access to SEC records where its misconduct derailed an investigation.
Multiple factors suggest the attached decision, Aguirre v. SEC, was the motivating factor behind the SEC’s effort to obtain this unique exemption to FOIA.
Mary Schapiro’s letter states that the SEC attempted to get the broadened exemption in 2006, 2008, and with the current legislation. 2006 correlates to the filing of my FOIA complaint and 2008 to the decision in the case.
Impact of the case.
According to my research, no court has ever ruled against the SEC on Exemption 3, Exemption 4, or Exemption 7(C). The District Court in the attached case, Aguirre v. SEC, ruled against the SEC on all three issues.
According to the SEC’s brief in Aguirre v. SEC, a decision in favor of the Plaintiff would have this prospective effect:
The impact this case could have on the Commission is significant because commercial and financial information is central to most of its investigations. Id. ¶ 7. Also, hedge fund advisers, like Pequot, are likely to be aware of this case, and as they tend to consider secrecy and privacy to be of the utmost importance, any decision requiring disclosure could have a strong impact on their willingness to provide information to the Commission. Id. ¶ 6 (emphasis added).
This is the same argument Chairman Schapiro makes in her July 30, 2010, letter. The court found the argument to have multiple flaws.
Aftermath of the decision.
I believe it is fair to say that the information gained through FOIA from the SEC was effectively used to force the SEC to file the case against Pequot and Samberg, which was promptly settled for $28 million.
Please click on the image below to access a pdf document of Mr. Aguirre’s letter to Chris Dodd and Barney Frank:
I beseech you to share this story and Mr. Aguirre’s letter with as many of your friends, colleagues, and assocaites as possible. Gary’s message to me and his letter to Dodd and Frank are the strongest evidence of the overwhelming stench of the Wall Street-Washington incest polluting our country. Thank you again, Mr. Aguirre!!
Related Sense on Cents Commentary
SEC Settles with Gary Aguirre or Wall Street-Washington Incest Personified, RECOMMENDED ; (June 29, 2010)