The SEC found that 49 of the accounting firm’s auditors had “obtained or circulated” answers to CPA license exams and that hundreds of its employees cheated on the ethics portion of the exam and “various continuing professional education courses” required to maintain their licenses over “multiple years,” the SEC said in a statement.
“This action involves breaches of trust by gatekeepers within the gatekeeper entrusted to audit many of our nation’s public companies. It’s simply outrageous that the very professionals responsible for catching cheating by clients cheated on ethics exams of all things,” said Gurbir Grewal, director of the SEC’s Division of Enforcement.
Between 2017 to 2021, 49 of the firm’s auditors shared or received answers to the ethics exams in order to receive their licenses. Hundreds of others cheated on continuing education courses needed to maintain their standing with state oversight boards.
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