Securities and Regulatory Defense

Sher Tremonte defends professionals and financial services firms in investigations and enforcement proceedings initiated by regulatory agencies such as the SEC, FINRA, the CFTC, and the IRS. Our firm has represented clients accused of the full spectrum of financial regulatory enforcement violations, with notable success warding off allegations of insider trading, accounting fraud, and market manipulation. We pursue the quickest and most efficient path toward resolution, deploying our investigative acumen and deep market knowledge to help clients quickly return to business as usual while minimizing exposure. When financial regulators cannot be persuaded that no violations have occurred, we stand ready to negotiate a practical settlement or vigorously defend our clients in both federal court and administrative proceedings.

Our team has decades of experience successfully steering clients through regulatory investigations and enforcement proceedings. Two of our partners joined the firm after years at the SEC and the DOJ, during which they exercised substantial responsibility for the civil and criminal prosecution decision-making processes for matters concerning allegations of financial wrongdoing. Two other partners have led numerous defense teams in connection with financial fraud investigations, while another partner previously served as in-house counsel to a large financial services firm and currently serves as a FINRA industry arbitrator.


  • While at the SEC, partner Robert Knuts served as lead trial counsel in two successful insider trading jury trials. Since returning to private practice, he has successfully defended several lawyers and financial industry representatives in SEC insider trading investigations.
  • Represented the former accounting director for a leading consumer financial services company in connection with an SEC enforcement action in the U.S. District Court for the Southern District of New York. The SEC alleged that the client had engaged in various intentional violations of the federal securities laws, including accounting fraud. We were able to resolve the matter on terms that made clear our client had not engaged in intentional wrongdoing. Separately, the DOJ brought criminal charges against this client’s former colleagues in the U.S. District Court for the Southern District of Florida. While both defendants were convicted, our client was never charged.
  • Obtained a non-prosecution agreement for and avoided SEC charges against an officer of a blockchain company investigated for securities fraud in connection with an Initial Coin Offering that raised tens of millions of dollars.
  • Represented hedge funds in connection with SEC investigations into possible securities law violations.
  • Represented securities brokers in a FINRA insider trading investigation.
  • Successfully represented a trader in investigations by FINRA and the Chicago Board Options Exchange relating to manipulation of options and futures in the Volatility Index.
  • Successfully represented a bond trader in an investigation and civil litigation relating to manipulation of the market for government-backed bonds.
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