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Jun 09, 2005

CONTACT: Jamie Court (310) 392-0522 x327 or Doug Heller x309

Cox's Representation Of Financial Swindler Exposed, Should Disqualify Him From SEC Post

Santa Monica, CA -- President Bush's pick to lead the Securities Exchange Commission helped cover up one of the nation's biggest investment frauds, according to documents released today by the Foundation for Taxpayer and Consumer Rights.

The consumer watchdog group called upon the US Senate to reject Congressman Chris Cox's appointment as SEC chief based on Cox's representation of swindler William C. Cooper and his company First Pension Corp, which took investors for over $130 million.

FTCR today released a letter written by Cox, then a lawyer at Latham & Watkins, to securities regulators in California. The letter justified the trust deed scam perpetuated by Cooper's company in a bid for state approval and left out key facts -- such as the fact the SEC was investigating First Pension and that Cooper's real estate license had been suspended in connection with another half million dollar fraud.

Click here to read the letter.
Los Angeles Times columnist Michael Hiltzik wrote about Cox's efforts for First Pension today. Click here to read his column.

"The nation's top securities regulator should be an impartial watchdog not a lap dog for convicted swindlers," said FTCR's president Jamie Court. "The Senate should reject Cox based on his role covering up First Pension's crimes. Investors deserve to know that they have a regulator of the highest integrity on their side, not a lawyer willing to cut corners and hide information at investors' expense. The health of the US economy and investors' trust in Wall Street depends on the US Senate rejecting Chris Cox's nomination."

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