AG Ferguson says the company agreed to pay $100,000 for failing to maintain records related to ads that ran from 2012 through 2019.

OLYMPIA, Wash. — Editor’s note: The above video aired at an earlier date.

Twitter is the latest social media giant to pay for violations of Washington state’s campaign finance disclosure rules. 

Attorney General Bob Ferguson says the company agreed to pay $100,000 for failing to maintain records related to ads that ran from 2012 through 2019, when Twitter banned political advertising. 

Companies are required to maintain records about who paid for ads, when they ran, how much they cost, and the name of the candidate or measure supported or opposed. 

Facebook and Google have also agreed to settlements of $200,000 each, though Ferguson filed a second lawsuit against Facebook in April.

The law requires commercial advertisers to maintain the following information regarding ads they sell so that the information is available for public inspection:

  • The name of the candidate or measure supported or opposed;
  • The dates the advertiser provided the service;
  • The name and address of the person who sponsored the advertising; and
  • The total cost of the advertising, who paid for it (which may be different than the sponsor) and what method of payment they used.

The state sued Facebook again for selling political ads without disclosing all necessary information about who’s behind them. 

Attorney General Bob Ferguson first sued Facebook over the issue in 2018, with the company agreeing to a $238,00 settlement. 

Rather than comply with all of the disclosure requirements of Washington campaign finance law, Facebook said it would no longer sell political ads in Washington state.

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Twitter must pay $100,000 to Washington state for campaign finance violations.

Twitter received nearly $200,000 for hosting campaign ads between 2012 and 2019 but did not disclose that information to Washington’s Public Disclosure Transparency Account in violation of state laws.

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“Transparency in political advertising is critical to a free and informed electorate,” Washington Attorney General Bob Ferguson said in a Tuesday statement. “Whether you are a local newspaper or a multinational social media platform, you must follow our campaign finance laws.”

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The social media platform banned political advertisements on the site in November of last year.

“This resolution is reflective of our commitment to transparency and accountability,” a Twitter spokesperson said in a statement to FOX Business. “We’ll continue working to uphold our commitment to transparency and to protect the health of the online public conversation, especially ahead of the 2020 U.S. Election.”

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An independent researcher in communication with the state Public Disclosure Commission requested records for ads for 12 campaigns between 2012 and 2019 from Twitter but did not hear back for two months, according to a press release.

“The people of Washington, in their overwhelming vote for the disclosure Initiative 276 nearly a half-century ago, created one of the nation’s most emphatic demands for transparency and accountability in campaign finance reporting,” Public Disclosure Commission Chair David Ammons said in a statement.

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(Reuters) – Twitter Inc has to pay $100,000 to Washington state’s Public Disclosure Transparency Account for multiple political campaign finance violations, the state’s Attorney General Bob Ferguson said on Tuesday.



File photo of the Twitter logo displayed on a screen on the floor of the NYSE


© Reuters/Brendan McDermid
File photo of the Twitter logo displayed on a screen on the floor of the NYSE

Twitter received nearly $200,000 for campaign ads from 2012 through 2019 but failed to follow Washington state disclosure laws, the attorney general’s office said in a statement. (https://bit.ly/3nOaSkz)

The company failed to maintain the required records for at least 38 Washington candidates and committees that reported paying $194,550 for political advertising on Twitter’s platform since 2012, according to papers filed at the King County Superior Court.

“Transparency in political advertising is critical to a free and informed electorate,” Ferguson said. “Whether you are a local newspaper or a multinational social media platform, you must follow our campaign finance laws.”

Twitter did not immediately respond to a request for comment.

(Reporting by Tiyashi Datta in Bengaluru; Editing by Ramakrishnan M. and Krishna Chandra Eluri)

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NEW YORK (Reuters) – A U.S. judge on Thursday refused to dismiss an indictment accusing state-owned Turkish lender Halkbank

of helping Iran evade American sanctions.

U.S. District Judge Richard Berman in Manhattan rejected Halkbank’s claim that the Foreign Sovereign Immunities Act shielded it from prosecution, saying that law did not appear to grant immunity in criminal proceedings.

He also said an exception for commercial activity “would clearly apply and support the Halkbank prosecution,” citing the bank’s interactions with U.S. Treasury Department officials and its alleged laundering of more than $1 billion through the U.S. financial system.

U.S.-based lawyers for Halkbank did not immediately respond to requests for comment. The Department of Justice did not immediately respond to similar requests.

Halkbank has pleaded not guilty to bank fraud, money laundering and conspiracy charges brought last October.

U.S. prosecutors accused Halkbank of using money servicers and front companies in Iran, Turkey and the United Arab Emirates to evade sanctions, enabling oil and gas revenue to be spent on gold and facilitating sham food and medicine purchases.

They also accused Halkbank of helping Iran secretly transfer $20 billion of otherwise restricted funds, including the $1 billion through U.S. accounts.

A trial is scheduled for March 1, 2021.

Halkbank has separately asked the federal appeals court in Manhattan to replace Berman with a different judge because of his alleged bias, an accusation Berman has denied.

Berman has overseen several related cases, including the 2018 conviction of former Halkbank executive Mehmet Hakan Atilla and a guilty plea by Reza Zarrab, a wealthy Turkish-Iranian gold trader who testified against Atilla.

Halkbank’s case has added tension to U.S.-Turkish relations, and gained renewed attention in former U.S. national security adviser John Bolton’s recent memoir.

Bolton wrote that Turkish President Tayyip Erdogan in 2018 gave U.S. President Donald Trump

(RTTNews) – The Securities and Exchange Commission Wednesday announced that Morgan Stanley has agreed to pay $5 Million for violations of Regulation SHO, the regulatory framework governing short sales.

According to the SEC’s order, the structure of Morgan Stanley’s prime brokerage swaps business resulted in violations of Reg SHO. As set forth in the order, Morgan Stanley hedged synthetic exposure to swaps by purchasing or selling the securities referenced in the swaps, and it separated its hedges into two aggregation units – one holding only long positions, and the other holding only short positions. According to the order, Morgan Stanley was able to sell its hedges on the long swaps and mark them as “long” sales without concern for Reg SHO’s short sale requirements.

Market participants cannot disregard the rules of the road established by Reg SHO for all short sales,” said Daniel Michael, Chief of the Complex Financial Instruments Unit. “For many years, Morgan Stanley has improperly relied on Reg SHO’s aggregation unit exception, resulting in orders being mismarked for countless transactions.”

The views and opinions expressed herein are the views and opinions of the author and do not necessarily reflect those of Nasdaq, Inc.

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