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$1.8 Billion SAC Plea Deal Awaiting Judges' Approval and More

By Gabriella Khorasanee, JD on November 04, 2013 | Last updated on March 21, 2019

Back in July, SAC Capital was indicted on five counts of insider trading, just two weeks after the S.E.C. filed a civil case against SAC Capital billionaire hedge fund manager Steven Cohen. Today, the United States Attorney's Office for the Southern District of New York announced a plea agreement between the DOJ and SAC Capital, reports Reuters.

The Settlement

The plea agreement and settlement reached between the DOJ and SAC Capital is the largest yet in insider trading history, according to the Government. The settlement requires the aggregate payment of $1.8 Billion, which includes $616 million paid in a civil settlement earlier this year, according to The Wall Street Journal (subscription only).

The settlement will also prohibit SAC Capital from managing public funds, and will in effect turn SAC into a family office that manages the funds of Cohen and employees, about $9 billion, reports CNBC. In a letter to Judges Swain and Sullivan, the Government stated: "The Government believes that the proposed global resolution is fair, reasonable, and firmly promotes the interests of justice, deterrence and respect for the law." Both judges of the civil and criminal cases must approve the settlement.

Effect on Steven Cohen

Steven Cohen himself has not admitted any wrong doing and is not charged with any criminal activity, according to Reuters. Negotiations to settle his civil case filed by the S.E.C. are still ongoing, reports The Wall Street Journal.

Though Cohen himself is escaping criminal charges, SAC's guilty plea does not reflect well on him. How this will affect his reputation and business dealings though, is hard to say. With as much money as he has, it seems like he can do whatever he wants. Of the eight SAC analysts that were indicted, six pleaded guilty. How the settlement will affect the trials of the remaining two, who have pleaded not guilty, remains to be seen.

In August, the Second Circuit ruled against Vermont, holding that Vermont could not shut down the Vermont Yankee Nuclear Power Station out of safety concerns and that the state's actions were preempted by federal legislation, namely the Atomic Energy Act.

Last week, Entergy, the owners of the Vermont Yankee Nuclear Power station filed papers with the U.S. District Court for the District of Vermont seeking $5.4 Million in legal fees, reports the Brattleboro Reformer. Entergy argues that it's entitled to fees under the Dormant Commerce Clause claim, while Vermont argues that the Dormant Commerce Clause claim was not even adjudicated because the Second Circuit vacated as the claim was not ripe for review.

Though on its face, it may not be relevant what claim was the winning one, it in fact has big repercussions because Vermont argued that "the Dormant Commerce Clause and federal law 'bars a claim for attorney's fees where a party prevailed only on a claim that a federal statute preempts state law.'" Because of missed filing deadlines, and the huge burden that would impose on the state's finances, we would find it surprising if Entergy received fees in this case.

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