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Bob Thomas Quoted About SEC Whistleblowing in Law360

August 28, 2019

Law360 quotes Bob Thomas in its SEC whistleblowing piece “Publicizing Whistleblower Claims Doesn’t Always Pay Off.”  In particular, it discusses Harry Markopolos alleging $38 billion fraud by GE.  Markopolos may receive a reward for the report he gave to SEC.

He also reported the fraud in the news.  He joined with a hedge fund to profit from loss to GE stock based on his report.

Financial industry whistleblower Harry Markopolos, who has criticized delayed payouts from the SEC’s program, partnered with a hedge fund to release a report earlier this month alleging a $38 billion accounting fraud at General Electric Co. As part of their agreement with the unnamed hedge fund, those who prepared the report were eligible for a cut of any profits the hedge fund made by betting against GE stock, according to the report.

Markopolos’s actions are unusual. They can also be difficult for many whistleblowers to achieve. The article notes criticisms, including by Markopolos, of the time SEC takes to pay out rewards.

The article quotes Bob Thomas, a WLC attorney with deep SEC whistleblowing experience, who explains that some criticism stems from lack of familiarity.

I think it’s easy when you stand in one place to say, ‘Gosh, they should be doing better.’ But have you been in their shoes?” said Bob Thomas, co-founder of the Whistleblower Law Collaborative LLC.

As we always tell clients, being a whistleblower is hard.  It is important to have attorneys who understand the process and can help navigate government programs. Preparation and experience are key.