Star Investment Banker Quattrone Wins Again
The NASD has withdrawn charges against former Credit Suisse First Boston (now Credit Suisse (USA)) investment banker Frank Quattrone. In March 2003, the NASD charged Mr. Quattrone with “spinning,” claiming that he used the lure of popular initial public offerings to draw financing business to his firm. Ironically, Credit Suisse decided not to fight similar charges brought against the firm and settled by agreeing to a consent decree and the payment of a $150 million in penalties and disgorgement. http://sec.gov/litigation/litreleases/consentcsfb.pdfThe decision by the NASD is latest legal victory for Mr. Quattrone, who has maintained steadfastly his innocence in the face of an array of charges by the government and regulators. Previously, the government charged Mr. Quattrone with obstruction of justice based on a case that centered on a single e-mail. The initial criminal trial ended in a hung jury. While Mr. Quattrone was convicted in a retrial, the Second Circuit court of appeals reversed his conviction earlier this year (see related discussion below). The government has not decided whether to appeal or retry Mr. Quattrone.Shortly after the Second Circuit decision, the SEC overturned an NASD order banning Mr. Quattrone from the brokerage business for life (see related article below). The decision yesterday by the NASD to withdraw charges against Mr. Quattrone, thus, marks his fourth victory against the government and regulators. For further discussion of the NASD decision see: www.businessweek.com/ap/financialnews/D8HVS5SGO.htm; Andrew Ross Sorkin, NASD Ends Case Against Quattrone, N.Y. Times, June 2, 2006; Randall Smith, Regulators Drop Civil Case Against Frank Quattrone, Wall St. J., June 2, 2006, at C1.