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No Name, Big Gain: Anonymous Whistleblower Awarded $18 Million by the CFTC for Efforts on Undisclosed Case

Date Published
Nov 16, 2023

NOVEMBER 16, 2023. The Commodity Futures Trading Commission (CFTC) announced last month that they awarded an anonymous whistleblower $18 million for their assistance on a CFTC enforcement action in addition to a related action by another agency. The CFTC was introduced in 1974 with the passage of the Commodity Futures Trading Commission Act. Its purpose is to regulate the derivatives market in the US. The CFTC created stricter regulations for futures contracts, options, and swaps to create a more competitive, efficient, and safe market. Its Whistleblower Program was added in 2010 to protect whistleblowers and encourage those who have witnessed a wrongdoing to report it.

The whistleblower provided detailed information and assistance to the agencies, especially the Division of Enforcement. This information was lauded as both significant in its amount and its quality. The Director of the Division of Enforcement said, “This award appropriately rewards a whistleblower who gave valuable information during multiple contacts with DOE staff … The CFTC’s enforcement efforts benefit greatly from whistleblowers like this one, who provide and interpret key evidence and thereby conserve CFTC resources.”

In CFTC cases, whistleblowers are eligible to receive 10%-30% of the monetary settlement. Since its first awards were issued in 2014, the agency has granted almost $350 million to whistleblowers. In 2021, the CFTC issued its largest award to a single whistleblower of almost $200 million. Regardless of whether the CFTC grants an award, they will not disclose the identity or any identifying information of the whistleblower, except in limited circumstances.

The CFTC exists thanks to the Commodity Exchange Act of 1936. This regulates the trading of commodity futures, ensuring that the markets are fair and safe from manipulation, and is the foundation of the CFTC. It also provides confidentiality protections that help keep whistleblowers’ identities private.

If you would like to report securities, commodities, and banking fraud, you can contact attorneys at Tycko & Zavareei LLP.  Eva Gunasekera and Renée Brooker are former officials of the United States Department of Justice and prosecuted whistleblower cases under the False Claims Act and FIRREA. Renée served as Assistant Director at the United States Department of Justice, the office that supervises False Claims Act and FIRREA cases in all 94 United States District Courts. Eva was the Senior Counsel for Health Care Fraud. Eva and Renée now represent whistleblowers. For a free consultation, you can contact Renée at[email protected] (tel.: 202-417-3664) or contact Eva Gunasekera at [email protected]. You can also go to Tycko & Zavareei LLP’s website for whistleblowers to learn more at

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