BOSTON (Dow Jones) - A dwarf who worked a March 2003 bachelor party thrown for ex-Fidelity Investments trader Thomas Bruderman said Thursday that one of the clients who hired him for that event wants to hire him again, this time for a party in the Bahamas this very weekend.
Danny Black, who in August testified before a federal grand jury looking into whether Fidelity traders accepted lavish gifts from brokers looking for business, said the client wants him to "serve drinks poolside" and engage in " general shenanigans" at the Bahamas event, which is a birthday party for the client's wife.
Black declined to name the client, but a July Wall Street Journal article citing people familiar with the matter said that Jefferies Group Inc. (JEF) paid for a plane associated with Bruderman's bachelor party in Miami's South Beach. SG Cowen & Co. paid for a yacht cruise and Lazard Capital Markets paid for some hotel rooms, the Journal reported.
In November 2004, news emerged of a probe by the Securities and Exchange Commission and the National Association of Securities Dealers into issues surrounding gifts and gratuities involving mutual-fund giant Fidelity and other firms. The New York Times reported in May that the U.S. attorney in Boston was looking into the gift issue.
Mutual funds are required to award trading business based on "best execution," not because of gifts or entertainment
Lansing, Mich.-based Black said that he received an email from the client on Wednesday night and later spoke to the client by telephone. Black also said, given his grand jury testimony, that he was surprised to hear from the client.
"I still find it hard to believe that there's no hard feelings," he added.
Representatives for Lazard Capital Markets and Jefferies declined to comment. In a statement, SG Cowen said: "SG Cowen denies any involvement in hiring Mr. Black in the past or now."
Meanwhile, Allison Burroughs, the assistant U.S. attorney who had been working on the gifts and entertainments probe, has decided to leave for a law firm. The Boston-based law firm of Nutter, McClennen & Fish, confirmed that Burroughs is set to start there on Nov. 14 .
(END) Dow Jones Newswires
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