Former Assistant U.S. Attorney Robert Khuzami is being considered for the Securities and Exchange Commission’s top enforcement position, one source familiar with the matter said on Saturday.
The SEC’s new chairman, Mary Schapiro, has been looking for a “tough” prosecutor to restore the agency’s reputation as Wall Street’s top cop and an announcement could come in days, two sources said.
Khuzami, Deutsche Bank’s general counsel for the Americas, served for 11 years as an assistant attorney in the U.S. Attorney’s Office for the Southern District of New York, the bank’s web site said.
An SEC spokesman had no comment. The SEC’s enforcement division has been tarnished by the scandal involving Bernard Madoff, who has been accused of defrauding investors of $50 billion.
The sources said an announcement could come as early as next week. One source said the announcement was dependent on Khuzami accepting the position.
Former Assistant U.S. attorney Joseph Warin was also courted by Schapiro to take over as the SEC’s enforcement director, but could not take the position, one source said.
Warin has represented Schapiro as well as the Financial Industry Regulatory Authority, the broker-dealer watchdog Schapiro used to lead.
Warin, who served as assistant U.S. attorney in Washington from 1976 through 1983, is currently a partner at Gibson, Dunn & Crutcher, the law firm’s website said.
The current enforcement chief, Linda Thomsen, who joined the SEC in 1995, was appointed to the position by former SEC Chairman William Donaldson in 2005.