Complaint Alleges SEC Watchdog Retaliated Against Whistleblowers

Tyler Durden's picture

Who blows the whistle on the whistleblowers?

Nobody – if they can help it.

In yet another example of big-government hypocrisy allegedly committed by an office meant to hold other government employees accountable, the Wall Street Journal is reporting that the watchdog for the Securities and Exchange Commission has himself become the subject of complaints by several whistleblowers. At least two employees working for SEC Inspector General Carl Hoecker have filed complaints to a different federal whistleblower-protection agency, alleging that he and his senior staff retaliated against them for calling out misconduct within the inspector general’s office, according to the Wall Street Journal.

The SEC watchdog encourages staff at the top securities regulator to blow the whistle on misconduct and fraud involving SEC employees, from insider trading to expense fraud.

The whistleblowers also reported the allegations to Sen. Chuck Grassley, chairman of the bipartisan Senate Whistleblower Protection Caucus, which focuses on laws and other issues affecting whistleblowers. A Grassley spokesman said he is “looking into the matter, and his office intends to reach out to the whistleblowers in question to see what can and should be done."

Of course, the office has vigorously denied the allegations. Raphael Kozolchyk, a spokesman for the SEC IG, said “a number of the claims contain significant factual inaccuracies, while others are grossly misleading.” He added that the office does “not comment on ongoing personnel matters."

The whistleblower-retaliation allegations stem from complaints made to Hoecker last year by at least three officials in his office. The complaints allege misconduct by two of their fellow employees. The Office of Special Counsel, whose mission is to protect federal whistleblowers, is reportedly investigating the retaliation allegations. The office has the power to prosecute cases before an independent board, which can order agencies to pay compensation to harmed employees. A spokeswoman for the office declined to comment.

Initially, the two complainants at the center of the allegations filed complaints with the head of the SEC IG office – which operates independently of the agency it’s supposed to monitor – after noticing that two employees, a senior supervisor and one of his subordinates, were engaging in what appeared to be an office affair. The two would sneak away for “long lunches” during workdays, something the whistleblowers said amounted to time and attendance fraud.

The allegations center on potential time and attendance fraud by a supervisor in the inspector general’s office and a junior subordinate. The complainants said the two employees regularly disappeared together for several hours during workdays and engaged in inappropriate conduct in the office. Neither of the two employees responded to requests for comment.

 

The SEC Office of Inspector General referred the complaints to a federal prosecutor, who declined to pursue the case, according to documents reviewed by the Journal. The office’s own civil internal investigation of the complaints found insufficient evidence to conclude the two employees had an inappropriate relationship, but noted that “the supervisor created the appearance” of such a relationship, according to a public report earlier this year that didn’t name the individuals concerned. The report said the conduct had been addressed by management with the two individuals through remediation plans.

 

The whistleblowers’ concerns focus on how Hoecker handled their complaints. Inspectors general are meant to encourage whistleblowing. The whistleblowers allege they instead suffered retaliation and that the internal investigation wasn’t sufficiently independent to be fair.

Initially, the case was assigned to two senior investigators at the agency, one of whom had hired the two employees at the center of the case. But then Hoecker intervened by assigning one of the two employees under scrutiny to rewrite the agencies procedures to remove certain sections prohibiting conflicts of interest between employees. The two whistleblowers also said they were retaliated against, though it’s not clear exactly how.

Carl Hoecker

In their initial complaint, the whistleblowers alleged that Hoecker refers to the SEC commissioners as his “bosses” – which shouldn’t be true for the supposedly independent inspector general’s office.

The SEC Office of Inspector General internal probe was initially jointly led by two senior officials in the office, including a senior investigator who hired and supervised the two employees at the center of the complaints, the people familiar with the matter said. The investigator helped interview the complainants and refer the issue to prosecutors, according to documents obtained under public-records requests.

 

Hoecker also appointed one of the two employees under investigation to help coordinate a review of procedures in the inspector general’s office, according to documents reviewed by the Journal. The review, overseen by the inspector general, removed language designed to prevent conflicts of interest affecting internal investigations, such as allegedly happened in this case, according to the documents.

 

The complaints additionally allege that Mr. Hoecker, whose office is by law independent from the SEC, regularly refers to the commissioners who run the agency as his “bosses.”

Eventually, the IG’s office referred the complaints to a federal prosecutor who declined to take action.  The office’s own civil internal investigation of the complaints found insufficient evidence to conclude the two employees had an inappropriate relationship, but noted that “the supervisor created the appearance” of such a relationship, according to a public report earlier this year that didn’t name the individuals concerned. The report said the conduct had been addressed by management with the two individuals through remediation plans.

Hoecker, 60, was appointed as the SEC watchdog in 2013. More importantly, he also serves as chairman of the investigations committee of the Council of the Inspectors General on Integrity and Efficiency, which represents more than 70 inspectors general across the federal government. The council earlier this year said it had reviewed the whistleblowers’ allegations of retaliation by Hoecker and decided not to take any action, according to documents seen by the Journal. A spokesman for the council declined to comment.

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Throat-warbler Mangrove's picture

Long lunches getting his whistle blown.

philipat's picture

A clear breach of policy. SEC employees are required to spend Office hours WATCHING porn, not making it?

TheMexican's picture

This is what lawyers in power do.

pen·de·jo's

boattrash's picture

Picture this..

Man in his office desk chair, woman in his lap, riding the hair off of him, pissed off wife that opened the office door to this scene...Lawyer says, "I'm not fucking my secretary, honey. This is my new boss and she's fucking me".

WTFUD's picture

The Annual End of Year Hookers & Blow Office/Department Party should raise morale!

eatthebanksters's picture

Paid for by Jamie and JPM/Chase and Blanfein and GS....there's never enough blow or hookers for their good friends at the SEC.

Bondosaurus Rex's picture

"Inapropriate office Conduct"

Most government jobs get ahead by either sucking or blowing.

Mena Arkansas's picture

Plenty of time to fuck the help and file complaints. Somehow can't find the time to send a single banker to jail.

Ms No's picture

OT but a couple of interesting things on RT.  No wonder they want them banned.

Western funded white terrorist groups are being funneled into the Ukraine.  Useless idiots are in abundance.  I think this is exactly what happened with Hitler personally.  Hitler's funding was the same sources as that of Stalin and FDR. 

Following the 2014 Maidan coup in Kiev, militants from the Azov Battalion were organized and incorporated into the Ukrainian National Guard, used in Kiev’s military action against the self-proclaimed republics of Donetsk and Lugansk. The unit was established by the leader of the ‘Ukraine Patriot’ movement, Andrey Biletsky – also known in nationalist circles by the nickname ‘White Leader.’...

Although Ukrainian Interior Minister Arsen Avakov sought to include the Azov Battalion in a training program run by US Army units in western Ukraine, in 2015 the US House of Representatives unanimously adopted legislation outlawing the training and arming of the group. It referred to the battalion as “openly neo-Nazi” and “fascist,” and prohibited US instructors from training or arming them.

The Russian Foreign Ministry welcomed the move, noting that “it took the American Congress more than a year to realize that this battalion is a gathering of blatant neo-Nazis parading Hitler’s SS forces insignia.”...Ukraine’s neo-Nazi Azov Battalion is reportedly gaining traction in Europe, especially Germany. Over 2,500 foreign mercenaries are currently fighting on their side in E. Ukraine – three times more than in 2014, Spiegel reports, citing security authorities.

https://www.rt.com/news/409605-germans-join-ukrainian-azov/

Then it is hardly surprising that the dumb effing Marxists in France have gone completely pedophile.  There are two cases now where men have slept with 11 year olds and then got off because they didn't prove force.  In one case the girl somehow got pregnant and the child was put up for adoption.  We should also stop all immigration from this cultural Marxist states.  A white French person is every bit of a threat as those coming from anywhere else.  If Californians aren't pulling that shit yet.  In addition to all it's support of terrorism, moral relativism, etc., clearly Cultural Marxism is a pedophile disease as well.  IN ONE OF THE CASES THEY GAVE THE PEDO CUSTODY OF THE CHILD!

"The girl, who is of Congolese origin, was playing with her cousin in the street when the man approached her and invited her to a walk in the park, le Parisien reported. There, the then 11-year-old was undressed and subjected to sexual intercourse, she claims, saying she asked the man to stop and told the stranger her age.The man maintains the act was consensual, and that the girl told him she was almost 15-years-old – the age of consent in France. However, to obtain a rape conviction, prosecutors needed to prove that sex was non-consensual. The girl’s counselor, who met her after the incident, said she was of "girlish physique, [and] could not be confused with a teenager or a woman," according to le Parisien....

 SICK!  https://www.rt.com/news/409627-france-man-acquitted-rape-girl/

 

 

boattrash's picture

Ms No, that reminds me of an article on ZH (with video/audio), I believe, from that time era, where a journalist went up to a "soldier" to ask a question and was answered in perfect, "American" English...Can't remember if it was Ukraine or Crimea?

redmudhooch's picture

Some things never change.

http://www.larouchepub.com/eiw/public/1979/eirv06n22-19790605/eirv06n22-...

Feb. 15, 1979 Zionists tied to 'Nazi' organizing Last week, our COUNTER INTELLIGENCE Report presented Part One of an expose on the Zionist lobby's links to the Nazi Party and the Ku Klux Klan, prepared by Scott Thompson in collaboration with members of the Middle East and counterintelligence staffs of the Executive Intelligence Review. Zionist lobby parentage can be found in the pedigree of most Klan and neo-Nazi groups active in the U.S. in the 1960s. One notable case among many (see, "The Anti-Defamation League: Britain's Zionist Gestapo," EIR, Vol. 5, No. 30) is that of the American Nazi Party. According to sources privy to the founding of the American Nazi Party, George Lincoln Rockwell was on the ADL payroll. His American Nazi Party, the first neo-Nazi group to openly organize around an anti-Semitic program after World War II, was a front for the Zionist Lobby.......

Dead Canary's picture

Sen. Chuck Grassley will take immediate steps to cover the whole thing up.

williambanzai7's picture

What happened to the SEC’s Office of Useless Porn Reviewers?

boattrash's picture

They were "rehypothecated" and can be found at the CIA and FBI offices.

J J Pettigrew's picture

The Madoff SEC whistleblower said it best...

The SEC is full of people trying to land a job on Wall Street....why would they hurt their chances for

a job there by being a bad guy and nailing someone (ie doing their job)?

There is too much disincentive to doing your job at the SEC than there is incentive.

Promethus's picture

IGs work for management. They all know not to bite the hand that signs their paychecks. 

Anonymous_Beneficiary's picture

Guy doesn't look like a criminal..no, not at all.

/sarc