Have the JP Morgan-DOJ Settlement Talks Be Driven By A Whistleblower?

October 22, 2013 – Reports are that the Justice Department’s case against JP Morgan is being bolstered in part by the involvement of a whistleblower from inside the bank who is aiding the government.  The Wall Street Journal has reported that, “the cooperating person has provided information – including emails – suggesting the bank vastly overstated the quality of mortgages that were being bundled into securities and sold to investors before the financial crisis, the people said.”  The Wall Street Journal also reported, “Justice Department lawyers are emboldened by documents, uncovered in the course of their investigation, that point to JP Morgan knowingly peddling mortgaged backed securities whose underlying loans were of lesser quality than pitched to investors, according to people familiar with the investigation.”  Reports of insider assistance to the government in pursuing a case against JP Morgan further highlights the critical nature that whistleblowers play in allowing our system to self-correct.  The simple matter is, without the assistance of an insider such as the person being reported to be assisting the Justice Department in the JP Morgan case, the government would be at a severe disadvantage at the pre-litigation stage in leveraging any meaningful resolution, particularly in such large-scale, complex financial cases.  Whistleblowers provide detailed uncontroverted evidence that otherwise would be unavailable to the government.  It is believed that with respect to at least portions of the cases encompassed in this case, this insider may have filed a claim under the Federal False Claims Act, which includes a qui tam provision that enables individual citizens to bring claims on behalf of the taxpayers against companies such as JP Morgan, who are alleged to have defrauded our government.  To encourage such whistleblowers to come forward, the False Claims Act includes bounty provisions that compensate whistleblowers for the courageous efforts necessary to step forward and report powerful corporate interests, such as those in the JP Morgan case.  These bounties can range anywhere between 15 and 30 percent of civil penalties and fines collected by the federal government as a result of the underlying qui tam action.

Young Law Group, P.C., represents whistleblowers in the United States and abroad, in a variety of cases, including IRS Whistleblowers, False Claims Act (Qui Tam), and SEC related fraud.  For a free confidential consultation, please call Eric L. Young, Esquire at (215) 367-5151 or email to eyoung@young-lawgroup.com.