His work at NERA has included expert testimony and consulting involving securities fraud, mutual and hedge fund issues, exchange-traded fund disclosure and trading, securities lending, broker-dealer-related disputes, derivatives, swaps, and ERISA matters.
He has also provided opinions on damages in bribery cases under the Foreign Corrupt Practices Act. Conroy has testified in US federal and state court, and has appeared at mediations and arbitrations. Conroy was an economist at the US Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) and developed new products for Folio Investing, an online brokerage firm.
I hope, at some point in her life, that she will forgive me."But District Attorney Colon Willoughby said Ruth, a highly respected judge who had the potential to go on to the state Court of Appeals or state Supreme Court, was not the only victim of the crime.
Crouch's actions also caused "tremendous harm" to his family, the people who worked for him and how the Wake County Courthouse operates."It's caused great harm to the practice of law and how we'll be able to practice law in this district and how we'll be able to do the business that the people expect us to do because of the level of distrust created because of this defendant's conduct," Willoughby said.
"It is now the task of each of us to redouble our efforts to repair that damage, to recommit ourselves to the administration of true justice and to fully restore the confidence and trust of the citizens of our court.”A long-time Raleigh attorney whose practice handled more than 2,000 cases each year, Crouch was also disbarred as part of his plea deal with prosecutors."I stand before you, judge, a man who's been disgraced, humiliated and had stripped away from my soul any dignity that I've earned in my life," Crouch told Ridgeway before sentencing.
"I have lost my reputation, my livelihood, my name and the trust of my fellow man. I've embarrassed and humiliated my wife and my family, and I've caused a lot of pain and embarrassment to my profession. You don't have to tell me, I know."Defense attorney Joseph Cheshire said Crouch had become arrogant and took on too many cases, took shortcuts and made serious mistakes."James Crouch would come into this courtroom and act like he was the man," Cheshire said. He took way too many cases because that was his way to prove that he was the man when, in, fact, he wasn't." Witnesses testified during the two-day sentencing hearing this week that many of Crouch's clients in the questionable cases paid him an extra $750 to change the date of their DWI conviction using a legal action to correct clerical errors called a "nunc pro tunc" order and that former District Judge Kristin Ruth unknowingly signed off on the orders.
We further find that founder-led firms strongly underperform a matched sample of non-backdating firms.
This finding contrasts a number of studies that document superior operating and stock return performance for founder-led firms.
Crouch was indicted in June on two felony counts of obstruction of justice and one felony count each of criminal conspiracy and altering court documents – charges that carry a maximum of 13 years in prison.
Ruth, who was also indicted in the case, resigned from the bench in May and pleaded guilty to a misdemeanor of failure to discharge the duties of her office.
We are very grateful for the comments and suggestions of two anonymous referees, Robert Battalio, Vidhi Chhaochharia, Douglas Cumming, Alex Edmans, John Griffin, Jean Helwege, Randall Heron, Jiekun Huang, Gregg Jarrell, Eric Kelley, Sandy Klasa, Alok Kumar, Doron Levit (NFA discussant), Erik Lie, Emmanuel Morales-Camargo (SWFA discussant), Tao Shu (FMA discussant), Richard Sias, Konstantinos Stathopoulos (EFA discussant), Kevin Tang, Joe Zhang, Tingyu Zhou (CFA-JCF discussant) and seminar participants at University of Miami, University of Michigan-Dearborn, as well as 2012 NFA, 2013 SWFA, 2013 FMA, and 2013 EFA meetings and the 2014 CFA-JCF Conference on Financial Market Misconduct.
We also gratefully acknowledge the assistance of students at the University of Miami in updating the backdating news sample for this project: Moayed Almoayed, Abdullateef Alsumait, Paola Caicedo, Santiago Nieto, Theresa Recicar, Sean Sappanos, Michael Schwarzmann, James Seyfried, Ashley Somers, and James Steinlage.
Defense attorney Brad Bannon said that, over the course of the five years in question, Crouch represented between 1,000 to 2,000 people on DWI charges and the number of cases in question was a relatively small percentage of them."He obtained this relief in 80 cases," Bannon said.