Three stuffed money bags

A whistleblower who reported suspected misconduct to regulators has been awarded US$1 million by the U.S. Commodity Futures Trading Commission (CFTC).

The whistleblower tipped off regulators to a scheme that violated U.S. derivatives laws and led to enforcement action by the regulator, the CFTC said in a release.

The tipster initially reported concerns internally and then reported to another agency, which referred the case to the CFTC.

The CFTC said the award is “significant” because it demonstrates that whistleblowers can receive financial awards even if their tip comes through a referral and if the reported conduct isn’t the basis of the charges ultimately brought by the CFTC.

“As the specific facts and circumstances of this matter demonstrate, the whistleblower does not have to identify the exact wrongdoing the CFTC ultimately charges — it is enough for their information to lead CFTC investigators directly to evidence of one or more of the agency’s claims,” said Christopher Ehrman, director of the CFTC’s whistleblower office, in a statement.

“Here, the whistleblower identified a problem in one area, and our division of enforcement used that knowledge and the whistleblower’s subsequent assistance to uncover illegality in another,” Ehrman said.