SEC whistleblower turns down share of $16.5 mill in Deutsche Bank case

Eric Ben-Artzi, the whistleblower exposed fraudulent accounting in Deutsche has turned down his share of a $16.5 million award from the Securities and Exchange Commission. His reason is that the agency did not punish any of the bank’s executives. Ben-Artzi, is a former Deutsche risk officer, was awarded the money for information that led the agency to fine Deutsche Bank $55m last year. The SEC found Deutsche misstated its accounts at the height of the financial crisis by improperly valuing a giant derivatives position.

Ben-Artzi said the fine should be paid by individual executives, not shareholders, and that the “revolving door” of senior personnel between the SEC and Germany’s largest bankplayed a role in executives going unpunished.

The SEC, citing confidentiality, and Deutsche Bank also declined to comment. Ben-Artzi was allocated $8.25m along with the same amount to Matt Simpson, a former Deutsche trader, who both applied for it, according to interviews and documents seen by the FT.

Mr Ben-Artzi said that although he would refuse to take any money himself, he was not able to reject parts of his award accounting for the majority of the $8.25m “î that were claimed by his ex-wife, lawyer or outside experts who worked on his submissions to the SEC.

Jeffrey Newman represents whistleblowers but not Mr. Ben-Artzi.