The Securities and Exchange Commission is considering recommending charges against a Bear Stearns & Cos. executive and three former brokers, who were allegedly involved in processing improper mutual fund trades, Dow Jones reports.

Peter R. Murphy, senior managing director for global clearing services, was notified of the possible SEC charges on Jan. 14, according to an updated broker disclosure form filed with the National Association of Securities Dealers.

Former brokers Matthew Mills and Evan Greenberg, and a former supervisor, Mark Hurant, also were informed in mid-January that the SEC staff was considering bringing charges against them. They have all denied the SEC allegations. Hurrant, in his filing, has said that "all account forms and trades were approved by compliance, accounting and legal at Bear Stearns and Co. Inc."

Bringing charges against individuals who worked at Bear Stearns is expected to help the regulators determine if the firm's clearing division allowed illegal mutual fund trades, which have been found to be widespread in the mutual fund industry.

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