JPMorgan Chase treated indicted employees better than an executive who cooperated with federal investigators, according to a lawsuit.
Commodities trader Donald Turnbull claims in court papers he was abruptly canned from the bank’s precious metals trading group as soon as JPMorgan execs discovered the extent of his cooperation with the U.S. Department of Justice.
Ultimately, the DOJ indicted six JPMorgan traders in 2019 for spoofing, or market manipulation through creating fake supply and demand.
In 2019, Turnbull says the information he gave the DOJ “revealed significant, multi-year lapses in JPMorgan’s trading oversight mechanisms and enforcement judgments.”
Of the six accused employees, three were “released” from their jobs “favorably,” Turnbull claims in Manhattan Federal Court papers, while one resigned, and two others were terminated only after their indictments were unsealed.
But Turnbull, a 15-year veteran of the bank, was canned, had his unvested stock options canceled, and faced JPMorgan’s threats to “claw back his prior compensation,” he charges in the litigation. He was not accused in the DOJ probe.
The bank justified Turnbull’s termination by claiming he himself had engaged in trades which had “the appearance of spoofing,” a claim which, he says, was “retaliatory.”
Turnbull is seeking unspecified damages. JPMorgan Chase declined comment.