Todd Brecher Quoted in Law360 on Court Ruling Regarding FERC Enforcements Against Individuals

Todd Brecher, an associate in the energy regulation, markets and enforcement practice at Akin Gump, was quoted in the Law360 article “Court Rulings Put FERC Enforcement Bull's-Eye On Individuals” regarding the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission’s ability to prosecute individuals for alleged energy market manipulation.

The article reports that a federal judge in Massachusetts this week refused to dismiss FERC’s effort to enforce a $1.25 million penalty against the manager of a Maine energy consulting firm for allegedly developing a scheme to obtain fraudulent payments from a regional grid operator. The ruling, according to the article, follows a similar outcome last year from a federal court in California.

Speaking about FERC’s belief that its increased efforts to target individuals for market manipulation can continue unimpeded, Brecher, who previously worked in FERC’s enforcement division, said, “Even if FERC were to lose on that issue in another district court, I’m not sure that would cause it to necessarily retreat from that view.”

Brecher added, “To the extent that individual subjects are less confident that a federal court will see things their way as to this question of jurisdiction, that could certainly impact a decision to settle a case rather than litigate it. But FERC still has to prove its case in federal court.”