SEC agrees to share hedge-fund probe info with Senate

MarketWatch – The Securities and Exchange Commission has agreed to share some internal memos and make available staff for interviews with Senate investigators probing whether a hedge-fund investigation was derailed because of political interference, according to a Senate spokeswoman.

The decision came after Senate Finance Committee Chairman Charles Grassley, R-Iowa, wrote to SEC Chairman Christopher Cox and expressed concern that the SEC was imposing “unnecessary delays” in responding to lawmakers.

“Chairman Grassley has received word from Chairman Cox that the Securities and Exchange Commission intends to cooperate with the request Chairman Grassley made with (Senate Judiciary Chairman Arlen Specter) for documents and interviews related to the allegations of former SEC attorney Gary Aguirre concerning the SEC’s review of a major hedge fund,” a spokesman for Grassley said in a statement. “Senate Finance Committee investigators are working to review documents received already and plan to conduct a number of interviews on the matter.”

The lawmakers are looking into complaints by Aguirre that his supervisor reversed course and prevented him from issuing a subpoena to John Mack, then at Credit Suisse First Boston and now chief executive of Morgan Stanley (MS). Aguirre claimed that the SEC supervisor cited Mack’s powerful political connections. Mack is a longtime friend of Pequot Capital Management head Arthur Samberg. Pequot was being investigated for possible insider trading.

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