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February 5, 2023

Deloitte Is Finally Finished with That Whole Aequitas Investors Lawsuit Thing

That’s because the $234.6 million settlement Deloitte, EisnerAmper, and five other companies reached with investors of the now-defunct Oregon investment company Aequitas last July was approved in Oregon federal court on Dec. 16.

According to Law360, the judge also approved nearly $58 million in attorneys fees and costs.

Deloitte, EisnerAmper, law firm Sidley Austin, securities firm TD Ameritrade, and ratings agency Duff & Phelps will pay a combined $220 million. Law firm Tonkon Torp and Integrity Bank & Trust of Colorado had already agreed to pay $12.9 million and $1.7 million, respectively, in a separate agreement.

But there’s still no word on how much Deloitte and EisnerAmper will have to pay individually.

Aequitas investors filed a $350 million class-action lawsuit in April 2016, less than a month after the SEC charged Aequitas Management LLC and four affiliates, as well as three executives—CEO Robert Jesenik, executive vice president Brian Oliver, and CFO and chief operating officer N. Scott Gillis—with hiding the deteriorating financial condition of Aequitas while raising more than $350 million from investors.

The investors claimed in their lawsuit that Aequitas and its affiliated companies operated a Ponzi scheme from 2010 until 2016.

Oliver pleaded guilty to fraud and money laundering charges on April 20. His sentencing is scheduled for Feb. 3, 2020.

Deloitte was named in the lawsuit because the firm was Aequitas’ auditor for the years 2013 and 2014. EisnerAmper was the company’s auditor for the years 2011 and 2012.

According to Law360, the eight named plaintiffs in the suit each received $10,000.

Related article:

Deloitte, EisnerAmper, 5 Others to Pay $235 Million to Settle Aequitas Investors’ Lawsuit

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