(Editor’s note:Since this article, several whilstleblowers from the SEC, FINRA and NASDAQ have come forward. You can join the powerful litigation team by calling or emailing Benjamin Wey’s attorney Jonathan Lupkin (bio) at: email@example.com. In October 2017, FINRA NAC member Chris Brummer was sued for fraud. According to FINRA, Chris Brummer, a former FINRA NAC subcommittee chair deliberately made false statements to the FBI, DOJ, reported by FORBES. Read Benjamin Wey’s powerful Op-Ed for additional background.
“In the last 25 years, federal prosecutors in Manhattan only voluntarily dismissed four white-collar cases amid 22,000 filed cases of all sorts – Benjamin Wey was the fourth one wrongfully accused and then exonerated. Now he is suing everyone that has lied to the DOJ, FBI and SEC.”
Benjamin Wey’s landmark victory came with a hefty price: his reputation was tarnished and his family was ruined. In September 2015, he was falsely charged amid a political whirlwind of “getting tough on Wall Street CEOs” – fed by lies told by NASDAQ and FINRA to the DOJ, SEC and FBI. The government’s bogus charges against Mr. Wey fell apart from the start.
Malicious prosecution: lawsuits against NASDAQ, FINRA
On April 9, 2018, Benjamin Wey brought a $250 million lawsuit against 14 NASDAQ defendants, charging those Wall Street fat cats with lying to the FBI, DOJ and SEC – whose fabrication of nonexistent “NASDAQ listing rule violations” had formed the basis for Mr. Wey’s wrongful prosecution.
“Judge Alison Nathan is my hero. I am very proud to be vindicated by the Court,” Benjamin Wey told reporters. “The DOJ, SEC staff and FBI agents were played like total imbeciles misled by NASDAQ and FINRA’s corrupt top brass.”
“We are not members of NASDAQ or FINRA, therefore they have no business in our business. But NASDAQ, FINRA lied to the FBI, DOJ, SEC and defrauded government agents to serve their own commercial interests and irreparably harmed us. “
NASDAQ, FINRA: the culprits behind the racist ‘Nasdaq Spirit’
The conflict between the money-grabbing, publicly traded NASDAQ worth $16 billion and the highly successful American financier, investigative journalist Benjamin Wey was NASDAQ’s own making. It started in 2011 when the NASDAQ was caught lying and rigging the delisting of a China-based company, reported by Forbes. In retaliation, NASDAQ general counsel ED KNIGHT directed NASDAQ staff to lie to the FBI, SEC and the DOJ, pointing fingers at Mr. Wey with a charge of violating a nonexistent NASDAQ 300 round lot shareholders gifting prohibition rule. NASDAQ was so vindictive towards Mr. Wey that it squeezed the resourceful financier to the point of the NASDAQ wanting to see the man dead or rot in jail.
The Forbes Magazine told a great 2013 background story about how the NASDAQ and FINRA rigged the 2010 delisting of China-based, NASDAQ-listed CleanTech Innovations, Inc. – Mr. Wey’s former client. CleanTech produces wind mill towers and was in the process of hiring 300 workers in New Jersey before its abrupt delisting by the NASDAQ in early 2011 – only a month after its NASDAQ debut. Mr. Wey’s institutional clients, including the powerful Apollo Management had invested $30 million into CleanTech, believing the clean energy company would become a major employer in New Jersey during the global financial crisis, providing high-paying American jobs. The surprised NASDAQ delisting cost investors hundreds of millions in direct losses.
The NASDAQ racism revealed in hearing transcripts
NASDAQ’s reason for the delisting was bizarre, filled with mind-boggling racial hatred, quoting directly out of the NASDAQ hearing transcripts:
“CleanTech has not violated NASDAQ’s rules, but it has violated the NASDAQ spirit...” NASDAQ listing staff Michael Emen, Ed Knight, Arnold Golub, William Slattery, Alan Rowland said during a delisting hearing.”
“…NASDAQ must delist CleanTech to send a message to the world… it’s not open season for the 1.4 billion Chinese to cheat on the NASDAQ…”
“Violating the NASDAQ Spirit” in order to “send a message to the world” to “warn the Chinese” was NASDAQ’s publicly stated ground for delisting CleanTech. But there is no “NASDAQ Spirit” in NASDAQ’s listing rules. CleanTech appealed the absurd delisting to the SEC. In 2013, the five SEC Commissioners led by Mary Jo White issued a unanimous, historic ruling condemning the racist “NASDAQ Spirit”: “[T]he record does not show that the specific grounds on which Nasdaq based its CleanTech delisting decision exist in fact.” Reported by Forbes.
Sued by Senator Arlen Specter, NASDAQ Lied to the SEC, DOJ and FBI in retaliation
The humiliated NASDAQ led by ED KNIGHT and CEO ADENA FRIEDMAN was furious. They sought revenge by lying to FBI agents, fabricating a case against Mr. Wey and CleanTech.
NASDAQ general counsel Ed Knight, a notorious former Washington lobbyist personally led an effort to ruin CleanTech by telling lies to the SEC, FBI and DOJ.
Duped by the NASDAQ, the SEC, DOJ and FBI agents drank the fraudulent NASDAQ “Kool-Aid.”
On January 25, 2012, seven days after NASDAQ was sued for racism in a highly publicized lawsuit, twenty FBI agents rummaged through Benjamin Wey’s home and offices specifically looking for “evidence of misleading the NASDAQ” and “paper stock certificates,” as they had been told by NASDAQ.
But nothing was found because no alleged stock certificate has ever existed.
JOE LINK, the Ernst & Young auditor who oversees NASDAQ audits has declined repeated requests seeking comments. It’s unclear how much litigation charge NASDAQ would have to take against its reserves.
JOE LINK, E&Y will most certainly face shareholder class action lawsuits for being complicit in covering up the NASDAQ fraud.
“For years, senior NASDAQ staff visited us often, regularly played golf with our people, held joint marketing events with us, thanked us, repeatedly pitched us to refer clients to the NASDAQ while they trash-talked their competitor the NYSE. But NASDAQ screwed us over,” Benjamin Wey told reporters.
A nonexistent ‘NASDAQ 300 round lot shareholders gifting rule prohibition’
In their sworn affidavits, FBI agents MATTHEW KOMAR and THOMAS MCGUIRE made clear NASDAQ was the source against Benjamin Wey. The FBI agents testified under oath that NASDAQ had told them Mr. Wey and attorney William Uchimoto had violated a “NASDAQ 300 round lot shareholders gifting rule prohibition,” therefore “misled the NASDAQ during their clients’ NASDAQ listings.”
But the so-called NASDAQ listing rule doesn’t exist. Mr. Wey and Mr. Uchimoto were literally accused of violating a nonexistent NASDAQ rule – the basis for Mr. Wey’s indictment.
(Editor’s note: Here’s the basics: If a Self-Regulatory Organization (SRO) like the NASDAQ wishes to have a listing rule, it MUST file a Form 19b-4 with the SEC, which is required to publish it in the Federal Register seeking public comments, and issue a written Order to approve or disapprove, which is the rulemaking process under the law. Otherwise, there is NO rule, period. Nasdaq’s entire history of rulemaking is published (here) by the SEC – without ambiguity – NASDAQ never had a “300 round lot shareholders gifting rule prohibition.”)
Between the FBI agents and NASDAQ Staff: Who lied?
“NASDAQ told us Mr. Wey had violated the NASDAQ listing rules,” FBI agents Matt Komar, Thomas McGuire certified under oath in court filings. “The FBI relied on the NASDAQ’s representations.”
In the criminal case, Brady and 3500 materials produced by the prosecutors and obtained by Mr. Wey’s attorneys at Haynes and Boone also revealed NASDAQ staff Ed Knight, Arnold Golub, Michael Emen, T. Sean Bennett, Gary Sundick, Traynham Mitchell, William Slattery and Alan Rowland as the direct NASDAQ sources that had fed federal agents with fabricated evidence. Their timing was no coincidence: On Jan 25, 2012, FBI agents illegally searched Mr. Wey’s home and offices specifically searching for “evidence of misleading the NASDAQ” – seven days after CleanTech’s counsel Senator Arlen Specter had sued the NASDAQ for racism on Jan 18, 2012, announced in an explosive press release.
The Financial Industry Regulatory Authority (FINRA)’s general counsel Robert Colby abetted the NASDAQ fraud. As FINRA’s largest customer, NASDAQ pays FINRA $30 million a year for “market oversight” services.
FINRA told FBI agents that January 25, 2012 would be a “perfect day” to raid Mr. Wey’s offices since FINRA had deliberately scheduled Mr. Wey’s in-house general counsel to chair a FINRA panel outside the office.
The FBI’s Internal emails: NASDAQ lied to the FBI, ‘curiously missing’ NASDAQ meeting notes
David Massey, the disgraced former SDNY prosecutor who drafted the warrant to search Mr. Wey was told by NASDAQ that CleanTech was delisted because it had nefariously hidden its relationship with Mr. Wey in the listing process.
Anemail from David Massey to Patrick Feeney and Steven Susswein, SEC enforcement, dated Jan. 6, 2012, Subject: Facts of Manipulation, shed some light. The email reads: “Two RTO issuers that Wey promoted..CleanTch has been delisted from stock exchanges as a result of their failure to disclose their relationship with Wey, according to NASDAQ.”
But Mr. Wey’s advisory relationship with CleanTech was fully disclosed to NASDAQ. The NASDAQ not only knew it but also endorsed it. William Uchimoto, Esq., a former SEC Division of Market Regulation attorney, and as CleanTech’s listing counsel, arranged an in-person, voluntary interview on November 5, 2010 between the Nasdaq staff and Mr. Wey at Nasdaq’s Rockville, MD offices. NASDAQ listing heads Gary Sudnick, Michael Emen, William Slattery, among six other Nasdaq staff attended, and were free to ask Mr. Wey any questions over a nonstop, five-hour meeting. Mr. Uchimoto attended as CleanTech’s counsel, and Mr. Wey was present with his own two lawyers – litigators Barry Slotnick and Stuart Slotnick – who all kept detailed notes. Following this meeting, the NASDAQ staff thanked Mr. Wey. A month later, NASDAQ approved CleanTech’s listing without qualification on December 10, 2010. NASDAQ’s senior marketing team thanked Mr. Wey’s firm for having introduced a listing client to the NASDAQ, skipping the NYSE.
Exposed NASDAQ Scheme, the duped FBI agents MATTHEW KOMAR, THOMAS MCGUIRE
In a scheme to defraud the FBI agents, NASDAQ general counsel Ed Knight and staff Gary Sundick, Arnold Golub, William Slattery told FBI agents Matthew Komar and Thomas McGuire “could not locate” the notes of the November 5, 2010 meeting, which would have shown that Mr. Wey was not being questioned about CleanTech’s delisting, but was answering all disclosure inquiries made by nine senior NASDAQ staff in connection with their assessment whether to list CleanTech, which they collectively did so a month later on December 10, 2010.
On January 19, 2012, less than a week before the January 25, 2012 FBI raid on Mr. Wey, which was fed by NASDAQ, FBI Agent Matt Komar wrote to AUSA David Massey. The FBI’s internal email subject line was “CTEK Delisting” and reads:
“I spoke to Gary Sundick from NASDAQ and he said they were unable to locate any of the notes from the November 5, 2010 meeting with Wey…” “interesting how NASDAQ spins its stories…”
Instructed by Ed Knight, the head of Nasdaq Listing Investigations Gary Sundick told the FBI agents all nine NASDAQ staff who had participated in the November 25, 2010 meeting with Benjamin Wey took notes. And those notes were subject to strict regulatory record-keeping requirements. But,
When pressed by the FBI agents the whereabouts of those meeting notes, NASDAQ lied to the FBI that all nine NASDAQ staffers’ meeting notes with Mr. Wey “went missing.”
Incredulously, unless these nine NASDAQ staff are already dead, burning in hell, their depositions in a civil litigation could easily doom the NASDAQ.
NASDAQ vs. SEC, FBI: take the bullet or the poison?
Clearly, Benjamin Wey was charged with violating a made-up NASDAQ listing rule, a critical point even conceded by federal prosecutors Sarah Eddy, Michael Ferrara, Ian McGinley in their June 2016 court filing before federal judge Alison Nathan. Between the FBI agents’ sworn statements pointing fingers at the NASDAQ as their source, and the NASDAQ staff’s repeatedly altered stories – combined with their bizarre fairy tale of “suddenly missing” meeting notes, who lied?
NASDAQ now says it had nothing to do with the FBI agents’ sworn testimony relating to the fabricated NASDAQ listing rule violation, therefore leaving the FBI agents there hung out to dry.
But both the FBI and SEC have steadfastly maintained they charged Mr. Wey with a “crime of violating a NASDAQ listing rule,” which was informed by the NASDAQ. But the NASDAQ never had such a rule. Who could’ve known NASDAQ’s listing rules better than the NASDAQ itself?
When deposed under oath, will SEC staff and FBI agents testify against themselves for making false statements to the Court, or would they dump on the NASDAQ for having misled federal agents – a crime?
It’s a choice between a bullet and poison. Let NASDAQ CEO Adena Friedman and Chairman Michael R. Splinter pick the criminals inside NASDAQ.
Lying to the FBI is a crime. That NASDAQ making the shit up opens itself to huge civil and criminal liabilities. Who at the NASDAQ have lied to the Court, the FBI and the US Attorney?
That “misleading the NASDAQ, violating a NASDAQ listing rule” is WRITTEN ALL OVER MR. WEY’S INDICTMENT, which doomed this innocent man’s life. The NASDAQ-fabricated charge weighed on Mr. Wey’s shoulders with the threat of a 20-year prison term, with his LIBERTY AND FREEDOM potentially taken away from him, precipitated by NASDAQ’s lies to the government.
In the conflicting statements between NASDAQ staff and the FBI agents, who obstructed justice? Who will be a “neutered NASDAQ dog” in this public fight? Would NASDAQ CEO Adena Friedman take the fall?
Reported by Forbes, “in a landmark decision in July 2013, the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission slapped down Nasdaq and reversed its decision to delist a Chinese alternative energy company. The SEC determined that CleanTech Innovations had not intentionally withheld crucial information from Nasdaq. “[T]he record does not show that the specific grounds on which Nasdaq based its delisting decision exist in fact,” concluded the SEC. “And the considerable discretion afforded to Nasdaq therefore does not permit its delisting decision.” The July 11 2013 ruling ended a listing dispute that had started three years before. This was the first time the SEC had reversed a Nasdaq listing decision since the NASDAQ’s inception nearly 50 years ago.”
Crushing NASDAQ’s ‘Regulatory Immunity’ in federal court
Since 2010, under the glitzy NASDAQ CEO ADENA FRIEDMAN and NASDAQ Chairman MICHAEL R. SPLINTER, NASDAQ staff WILLIAM SLATTERY, ALAN ROWLAND, ED KNIGHT, MICHAEL EMEN, ARNOLD GOLUB have repeatedly lied to the SEC, DOJ and FBI agents, launching a series of vindictive, false accusations against Benjamin Wey.
An investigative story by Law360 titled Nasdaq Ordered To Turn Over Docs To PE CEO In Fraud Case reported on NASDAQ’s lies to the court. In May 2017, NASDAQ claimed it was entitled to “absolute regulatory immunity,” therefore would reject Mr. Wey’s subpoena order to produce documents backing the SEC, DOJ’s claims of “Wey misleading the NASDAQ.” NASDAQ’s racy Gibson Dunn lawyers Douglas Cox, Michael Huston argued NASDAQ was protected under “absolute regulatory immunity during NASDAQ listing, law enforcement and investigative privilege.”
But federal judge Alison Nathan quickly shut down NASDAQ’s nonsense. “And in the absence of direct authority for the absolute immunity from similar subpoenas of quasi-governmental entities like SROs, the court finds compelling reasons to decline to recognize such immunity here.” The federal judge was no less adamant in rejecting NASDAQ’s claims of privilege, calling them “procedurally improper and substantively lacking.” Read more: Disgraced Gibson Dunn Lawyer MICHAEL HUSTON Implicated in NASDAQ Regulatory Rape.
Under Court Order, NASDAQ grudgingly produced documents to Mr. Wey’s counsel in early June 2017 and certified in writing its production was complete. Guess how many times Mr. Wey had “misled the NASDAQ” or communicated in any form at all with NASDAQ staff during company listing applications? Zero. None. Zero! The NASDAQ thieves got caught!
Nasdaq Chairman Michael Oxley implicated in NASDAQ fraud, dirty Washington Politics
In letters addressed to NASDAQ’s Board of Directors in 2014 from CleanTech’s adviser, former Congressman Steve LaTourette, NASDAQ chairman Michael Oxley was personally involved in settling claims with CleanTech. Pressured by NASDAQ’s board, NASDAQ listing heads Michael Emen and Gary Sundick – the racists along with Ed Knight behind the “Nasdaq Spirit,” were fired. Their office clerk William Slattery took over as the new head of NASDAQ’s listing programs. William Slattery has since lied extensively to FBI agents.
In 2014, a deal was brokered between Steve LaTourette and NASDAQ Chairman Michael Oxley, the author behind the Sarbanes-Oxley Act. In exchange for CleanTech not suing NASDAQ for wrongful delisting, NASDAQ general counsel Ed Knight agreed to leave CleanTech alone. Advised by Steve LaTourette and Michael Oxley, CleanTech merged with a silicon valley tech company and changed its name to 6D Global Technology, disclosed the Steven LaTourette, Michael Oxley arrangement in an SEC filing dated June 13, 2014.
But Ed Knight wanted the revenge. NASDAQ promptly delisted CleanTech again in September 2015 when Benjamin Wey was wrongfully indicted on charges of violating a nonexistent NASDAQ listing rule – based on lies fed by NASDAQ to the FBI agents. During the delisting hearings in 2016, NASDAQ staff ALAN ROWLAND, ARNOLD GOLUB, WILLIAM SLATTERY said on the record that accusations against Mr. Wey were the only reasons for the delisting. But on appeal to the SEC, NASDAQ changed its story.
Unable to rebut the fact that DOJ had dropped all charges against Benjamin Wey, NASDAQ did an 180-degree reversal, claiming “Mr. Wey had nothing to do with NASDAQ’s delisting of CleanTech/6D Global.”
NASDAQ’s wrongful delisting of CleanTech for the second time in two years cost shareholders another $800 million in damages, exposed in a 2017 Forbes article. For the second time, CleanTech/6D Global’s share price went from $20 to $0, thanks to the NASDAQ “rape.” NASDAQ is the certain graveyard for investors.
NASDAQ misled SEC associate enforcement director Antonia Chion, Corruption at the SEC
Between 2014 and 2015, marching under Ed Knight and NASDAQ’s order, FINRA’s Robert Colby and his boss FINRA CEO Rick Ketchum pitched the NASDAQ fake story to the SEC’s ANTONIA CHION, aka Toni Chion, a mid-level SEC bureaucrat.
ANTONIA CHION had just missed the massive Bernie Madoff fraud, costing investors billions. An obscure former country prosecutor who’s made a career chasing petty shoplifters in the rural Kings County New York, ANTONIA CHION was deeply embroiled in the Bernie Madoff fraud. She was on the verge of being fired for incompetence, sources say. An ostensible bureaucratic waste, ANTONIA CHION was searching for the next target to keep her job. She soon landed her shifty eyes on Asian Americans Benjamin Wey, William Uchimoto as targets of “Chinese reverse merger” fraud. Read more: FRAUD SHORT SELLERS TRIGGER REGULATORS MISUNDERSTANDING OF REVERSE MERGER.
ANTONIA CHION and her underling MELISSA HODGMAN have never been to China. Neither could the duo locate China on a map. But the government wastes were anxious to help Ed Knight and Robert Colby, hoping to land future plush jobs at the NASDAQ or FINRA. Reporters have sent several FOIA requests to the SEC. They are being processed by Jeffrey Ovall, SEC’s FOIA chief. More will come to light.
The May 17, 2017 meeting at the SEC, whistleblowers emerged
Feeling the heat, on May 17, 2017, SEC Enforcement Director Stephanie Avakian personally invited William Uchimoto’s lawyers to a “friendly meeting” in Washington. According to meeting notes and emails reviewed by reporters, SEC enforcement staff Cheryl Crumpton, Steven Susswein, Patrick Feeney and Stephanie Avakian were quick to shift the blame to the NASDAQ, insisting “NASDAQ told the SEC there is a 300 round lot holders gifting rule prohibition William Uchimoto has violated… We relied on representations made by the NASDAQ…. they are the experts about their own stock exchange… Don’t blame the SEC…”
“But the NASDAQ never had a 300 round lot holders gifting rule prohibition,” said William Uchimoto’s attorney Daniel Zinman, a partner at Richards, Kibbe & Orbe who was present at the meeting facing off nine SEC enforcement staff headed by the politically connected SEC Enforcement Director Stephanie Avakian.
“NASDAQ lied to the government and completely made up a nonexistent rule violation,” Daniel Zinman told the SEC.
Intense media interest over the dismissed Benjamin Wey case has attracted whistleblowers from inside the SEC, NASDAQ and FINRA.
Several whistle-blowers presented reporters with records, including the SEC’s internal memos that clearly show Antonia Chion and Melissa Hodgman, Steven Susswein, Cheryl Crumpton, Patrick Feeney were behind the NASDAQ’s fake story, and their lies told the FBI..
By June 2017, federal judge P. Kevin Castel dismissed all of the SEC’s charges against William Uchimoto. Days later, the renowned federal judge Alison Nathan laid down the hammer on the FBI agents and NASDAQ’s lies. On June 13, 2017, the federal judge ruled that “The FBI agents – who are charged with reasonable knowledge of what the law prohibits – appear to have disregarded well-established constitutional principles that provide a bulwark against the execution of general warrants. That reflects, at the least, gross negligence or recklessness as to the potential for violation of the Fourth Amendment.”
“This case should serve as a powerful reminder for years to come that the government must adhere to fundamental safeguards of citizens’ privacy and liberty,” said Haynes and Boone partner David Siegal, a legendary former federal prosecutor with a stellar record of winning landmark cases, counsel to Mr. Wey.
“I am not yet blaming any government agents,” said Benjamin Wey. “Preet Bharara has never worked an hour in finance and he couldn’t have known better. He was duped by the NASDAQ, FINRA. ‘From hero to zero’ is harsh for Mr. Bharara’s increasingly irrelevant existence.”
“The US government authorities were grossly misled by those with ulterior motives. After a wild-goose chase, a politically hyped fake case was rushed in September 2015 ‘getting tough on Wall Street’ – fixated on fabricated allegations, false statements, nonexistent Nasdaq listing standard, completely made up ‘corrupt brokers’ B.S. – high on a PR gambit tailor-made for rousing petulant roosters, but none, ZERO on correct facts or the law.” Read more:Financier Benjamin Wey Exonerated in Victory, Issues Open Letter to Plaintiffs Law Firms Worldwide.
BENJAMIN WEY, DAVID SIEGAL, JOSEPH LAWLOR, SARAH JACOBSON, CHARLES GLOVER, HAYNES BOONE, WINNING LEGAL TEAM
Mr. Wey said he welcomes top litigation law firms and more SEC, FINRA, NASDAQ whistleblowers to contact his lawyers confidentially via email: JusticeForBenjaminWey@Gmail.com.
“It takes courage, facts, law, media and big money to pursue fraudsters,” said investigative journalist, financier Benjamin Wey. “We have concrete evidence and the dedicated resources to win big against all liars. Stay tuned. It’s just the beginning.”