As we enter the second year of operations for the Virginia Financial and Securities Fraud Task Force, we had the opportunity to sit down with the U.S. Attorney for the Eastern District of Virginia, Neil MacBride, to discuss the Task Force.
On Monday, a closely-divided Supreme Court held in Janus Capital Group Inc. v. First Derivative Traders, No. 09-525, that the "maker" of a statement for purposes of liability under Rule 10b-5 is "the person or entity with ultimate authority over the statement, including its content and whether and how to communicate it."1 The decision abrogates numerous circuit decisions — most notably in the Fourth and Ninth Circuits — that extended primary liability to persons who participated in some respect in the preparation or drafting of statements that were "made" by someone else. The Supreme Court thus has provided some comfort to the professional community providing services to public companies — including bankers, lawyers, accountants, investment and financial advisers, and others — that they will not unwittingly expose themselves to liability for their clients’ statements in private Rule 10b-5 suits.
Today, Murphy & McGonigle, P.C. announced that Hannah Berkowitz has joined the Firm as a partner in its New York City office. Ms. Berkowitz brings to the Firm substantial experience in defending complex securities and commercial litigation matters affecting broker-dealers and financial services firms.
Murphy & McGonigle, P.C. announced that Larry E. Bergmann has joined the firm as a partner in its Washington, DC office.