WASHINGTON, (Reuters) - David Kotz, the tough internal watchdog at the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission, is leaving the agency at the end of January to join a private investigative service.
Kotz, 45, probed everything from the agency's failure to catch convicted Ponzi swindler Bernard Madoff to bungled SEC contracts and even pornography-watching by agency employees.
But the hard-hitting lawyer has also drawn criticism from SEC staff who have complained his tactics have led to a culture of fear at the agency.
In December, Reuters reported that at least two SEC employees had filed formal complaints against Kotz, alleging he bullied witnesses and twisted facts to build a case against them.
Kotz plans to join Gryphon Strategies, a private investigative services firm where he will serve as a managing director in its Washington office. He will focus on conducting corporate fraud investigations and helping whistleblowers seeking to expose fraud, the SEC
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