Robert G. Heim
Attorney at Law
Robert G. Heim was formerly an Assistant Regional Director of the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission in New York City. Mr. Heim concentrates in corporate and securities law, including corporate formation and capital raising, hedge fund formation, registration of new broker-dealers and investment advisers, securities regulatory work, securities litigation, white collar criminal defense and FINRA arbitrations.
Mr. Heim also represents clients throughout the country in all phases of SEC investigations, litigation and appeals and has broad experience in matters involving insider trading, market manipulation, accounting fraud, broker-dealer sales practices, penny stock trading and the unregistered sale of securities. In December 2018 Mr. Heim argued an important SEC enforcement case before the U.S. Supreme Court entitled Lorenzo v. SEC. Mr. Heim has also argued cases in the D.C. Circuit, the 2nd Circuit and before the Commissioners of the SEC. At the trial level Mr. Heim has extensive experience representing clients in SEC litigation in U.S. District Courts and in SEC Administrative Proceedings.
In his federal criminal defense practice Mr. Heim has represented individuals and organizations in connection with grand jury investigations, criminal prosecutions, plea agreements, cooperation agreements, proffer agreements and sentencing matters. Mr. Heim’s federal criminal experience includes representing clients in grand jury investigations and prosecutions involving market manipulation, insider trading, securities fraud, the Foreign Corrupt Practices Act, bank fraud and other matters.
Mr. Heim received his B.A. degree, Phi Beta Kappa, from Fordham College in 1990. In 1993, Mr. Heim graduated cum laude, from Fordham Law School in New York, New York. After law school, Mr. Heim was employed in the Northeast Regional Office of the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission’s Division of Enforcement. During his tenure with the SEC, Mr. Heim was responsible for prosecuting several high profile cases, including the SEC’s case against eight New York Stock Exchange floor brokers and the SEC’s case against Orlando Joseph Jett. Mr. Heim was also responsible for cases involving accounting fraud, fraudulent sales practices, insider trading and market manipulation. Mr. Heim was awarded the SEC’s prestigious Capital Markets Award in 1999. Mr. Heim has also made numerous guest appearances on At Large with Geraldo Rivera, CNN, CNBC, Fox News, CBS News, MSNBC and the BBC and is frequently quoted by the New York Times, New York Newsday, New York Post, Bloomberg, and Reuters.
Mr. Heim is also the author of the book Going Public in Good Times and Bad, A Legal and Business Guide, American Lawyer Media, Inc., February 1, 2002. This comprehensive book provides an insightful and well-structured roadmap for any firm considering moving towards private or public equity funding. In addition, given the spate of recent news stories concerning insider trading, Mr. Heim wrote an article “How to Win an Insider Trading Case.”
Mr. Heim is admitted to practice law in the U.S. Supreme Court and in the State and Federal Courts of New York and is a member of the Association of the Bar of the City of New York and the National Association of Criminal Defense Lawyers.
- Represented a Fortune 100 banking institution in obtaining a dismissal with prejudice of a commercial lawsuit brought in NY State Supreme Court.
- Represented a Fortune 100 investment bank in a complex FINRA investigation, which was settled favorably with only a letter of caution.
- Represented a former bond trader in major parallel criminal and civil investigations brought by the US Attorney’s Office and the SEC.
- Represented a manager of a Fortune 500 company in a one of the largest criminal investigations conducted by the US Attorney’s Office, FBI and SEC into potential violations of the Foreign Corrupt Practices Act (“FCPA”).
- Represented the head of investment banking of a NY based broker-dealer in obtaining a dismissal with prejudice of a complex federal securities fraud lawsuit brought in the SDNY.
- Represented a multinational hedge fund in the negotiation of a complex side letter agreement with a large strategic investor.
- Represented a former investment banker in filing a petition for writ of certiorari in the US Supreme Court.
- Represented a Certified Public Accountant in a federal criminal prosecution for insider trading.
- Represented a hedge fund administration company in a complex federal grand jury investigation.
Margaret E. Peper
Attorney at Law
Margaret E. Peper began working with Meyers & Heim, LLP in 2003 and is currently Of Counsel to the firm. Prior to relocating to New York in 2003, Ms. Peper was a Partner and Director of Davis & Ceriani, P.C., in Denver, Colorado. Ms. Peper represents customers, broker-dealers and associated persons in all areas of securities fraud matters. She represents financial industry professionals, broker-dealers and publicly- and privately-held companies in state regulatory, SEC and FINRA investigations. Ms. Peper’s employment practice includes representation of employees and employers in all areas of employment litigation and contract negotiations both within and outside of the financial services industry, including on behalf of foreign nationals holding H-1B, O-1 and other visas. Ms. Peper has tried dozens of arbitrations and litigated claims of breach of contract, wrongful termination, discrimination, defamation, breach of fiduciary duty and tortious interference. Besides having appeared regularly before the SEC, FINRA, NYSE, U.S. Labor Department and the American Arbitration Association in arbitrations, administrative and enforcement proceedings, Ms. Peper has represented clients in both state and federal court.
Most recently, in July 2018, Ms. Peper obtained an SEC whistleblower award for her client equal to 24% of over $9,000,000 in monetary sanctions collected by the SEC in two covered actions, resulting in a lump sum award to Ms. Peper’s client of over $2,100,000. Ms. Peper obtained Decline to Prosecute letters on behalf of her clients, an executive and three separate entities, following the SEC Denver Regional Office’s 14-month investigation. Ms. Peper successfully negotiated a dismissal of all claims asserted against her client by the Colorado Division of Securities in an action pending for 13-months before the Colorado Office of Administrative Courts. Ms. Peper successfully represented several privately-held companies and individual executive officers in separate matters involving actions initiated by the SEC, FINRA and 11 different state securities regulators. Recent representative matters also include:
- Obtained a $500,000 settlement on behalf of NYSE floor traders arising from a breach of contract claim.
- Obtained six-figure severance package on behalf of employee of leading global financial services firm.
- Negotiated a six-figure severance package on behalf of an international brokerage services firm executive.
- Negotiated reinstatement of employment and back-pay on behalf of employee of one of New York’s (and the nation’s) premier centers in health care, biomedical research and medical education.
- Negotiated the settlement of gender and national origin discrimination claims filed against a Federal agency employer.
- Obtained a $525,000 settlement on behalf of an institutional broker wrongfully terminated from his LSE-listed investment bank.
- Despite threatened FINRA enforcement action, obtained a (FINRA non-reportable) Letter of Caution following her Pre- Wells Notice “Offer of Compelling Evidence” on behalf of a financial industry executive.
- Successfully prosecuted counterclaims for fraudulent inducement, misrepresentation and ERISA violations on behalf of financial executive resulting in a significant reduction in the amount owed under Employee Forgivable Loans (“EFLs”).
- Obtained a $575,000 settlement on behalf of an investment banker in a wrongful termination action against the corporate banking arm of an NYSE-listed company.
- Tried and won a FINRA arbitration award of over $624,000.00 in compensatory damages and interest in addition to $20,000 in forum and filing fees for a retail broker on claims of wrongful termination, tortious interference, and defamation. In this latter case, Ms. Peper successfully invoked the developing legal doctrine stating that licensed securities industry executives are subject to termination for “just cause” only, despite employment on an “at-will” basis.
- Along with co-counsel, Ms. Peper tried and won an $8,000,000 arbitration award, including over $450,000 in attorneys’ fees and $34,000 in forum fees, in a breach of fiduciary duty and civil conspiracy action brought on behalf of executive securities industry employees and shareholders against executive officers of a prominent regional broker-dealer.
- Obtained $950,000 settlement on behalf of a single public customer in an action alleging churning of an options trading account.
- Successfully argued an appeal (on the briefs) before the Seventh Circuit Court of Appeals in upholding a dismissal of all claims against corporate and individual securities industry clients involving allegations of fraud and suitability. Jacks v. Schneider Securities, Inc. 217 F.3d 525 (7th Cir. 2000).
Ms. Peper received her J.D. from the University of Denver, Sturm College of Law where she was research assistant to Professor Edward A. Dauer, Dean Emeritus and Professor of Law. Along with Professor Dauer, Ms. Peper co-authored “Manual of Dispute Resolution: ADR Law and Practice,” Chapter 17, (Two Volumes, Shepard’s / McGraw-Hill 1994; Annual Supplements 1995 and 1996) – Winner of the 1994 CPR Institute for Dispute Resolution Book Prize. Paperback edition published as “A Student’s Guide to ADR Law and Practice.” Revised Edition published as “ADR Law and Practice” (Juris Publishing 2000).
Bar Admissions and Memberships
Admissions: 1994, Colorado Supreme Court; 1996, U.S. District Court, District of Colorado; 1996, U.S. Court of Appeals, Tenth Circuit; 1999, U.S. Court of Appeals, Seventh Circuit; 2003, New York and U.S. District Court, Southern District of New York; 2008, U.S. Court of Federal Claims. Memberships: Ms. Peper is a member of the Colorado Bar Association and the New York City Bar.