Las víctimas olvidadas de Stanford ahora disponible en español

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Sunday, August 16, 2009

Who is Ralph Janvey? Stanford's victims know he wants a third

Sir Allen Stanford's attorney doesn't like Ralph Janvey, but that's not surprising. The SEC isn't crazy about him either, and U.S. Judge David Godbey told him, "You know everyone in the courtroom is angry with you," according to a report in USA Today.

Janvey has been tasked with taking over and cleaning up the wreckage from Stanford's $7 billion Ponzi scheme -- the second largest known disaster of this kind. Along the way, he's managed to piss off everyone he's encountered. The latest "transgression" is his demand for more than $27 million in fees for his team and the consultants he's hired to track down the missing billions of dollars in Stanford's former empire.

More than 20,000 investors are waiting in line for their respective pounds of flesh. And now, they have to wait in line behind the lawyer.

The full request, which hasn't been ruled on yet, consists of $20 million for which Janvey asked in mid-May, covers his team's work through April 12, with another $7.6 million covering the seven weeks that followed.

And, he wants much more ... a third, actually.

Janvey's team stretches to more than 100, and he's asking for 34% of the $81.1 million on hand to compensate these guys. The investors, of course, would walk away with a fraction of their lost money. The SEC is pushing back on the bill, which includes $8.9 million for advisory firm FTI Consulting and $8.4 million for law firm Baker Botts (interesting note: I did a jury duty stint where Baker Botts was defense council ... hopefully it will do better this time).

The SEC objects to $500 an hour rates for FTI ... and $280 an hour to make copies. But, what's the big deal? Digging through and sorting out fraud is not easy. The discounts that clients can usually squeeze out of consultants and attorneys are harder to come by. So, even the 20% discount Janvey's offered doesn't amount to much

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