Gupta’s Efforts to Overturn Insider Trading Convictions Rejected

The Second Circuit Court of Appeals upheld the conviction of former Goldman Sachs director Rajat Gupta for illegal tipping. Mr. Gupta was convicted of conspiracy and three substantive counts of securities fraud, centered on furnishing illegal tips to his long time friend and business partner Raj Rajaratnam...

Two SEC Insider Trading Cases Involving Spouses

The SEC filed two settled insider trading cases in which the husband is alleged to have misappropriated inside information from his wife. In each instance the husband understood he was not to trade. Yet in each case the husband traded and profited. In each case the husband settled with the Commission...

The SEC’s Continuing Investigation Regarding Carter’s, Inc.

Carter’s Inc. is the SEC investigation that just keeps on producing cases. Recently former firm vice president Richard Posey settled insider trading charges with the Commission after pleading guilty to one count of conspiracy in a parallel criminal action. SEC v. Posey, Civil Action No. 1:14-CV...

SEC Settles Insider Trading Case Tied to BP Oil Spill

The SEC filed a settled insider trading action against an employee of BP p.l.c. tied to the Deepwater Horizon oil spill in 2010. Specifically, the Commission claims that Keith Seilhan had material non-public information regarding the severity of the spill that had not been disclosed at the time he sold...

SEC Files Another Settled Insider Trading Case

Insider trading continues to be a key priority in the new get tough enforcement era. Last week closed with the filing of an insider trading action centered on the BP oil spill in the Gulf of Mexico. This week begins with another insider trading action, this time tied to clinical tests for a possible...

SEC Settles Another Expert Network Insider Trading Case

The Commission filed another settled insider trading case tied to its long-running expert network investigation. This time the action traces to the source of tips regarding Nvidia Corporation, Chris Choi. SEC v. Choi (S.D.N.Y. Filed April 23, 2014). It also names as relief defendants others from the...

SEC Settles Five Insider Trading Actions, Cooperation Key

The Commission filed two groups of settled insider trading actions centered on the merger of eBay, Inc. with Pennsylvania based e-commerce company GSI Commerce, Inc., announced on March 28, 2011. The first group traces to Christopher Saridakis as the source of the information, then the CEO of the Marketing...

Three Company Founders Settle SEC Insider Trading Case

Most insider trading cases center on news about a corporate event such as an acquisition or an earnings announcement that has not become public. In SEC v. Lawson, Civil Action No. 3:14-cv-02157 (N.D. Cal. Filed May 12, 2014) the Commission brought an action against three company founders who traded on...

Doctors Settle SEC Insider Trading Charges

The Commission filed two settled insider trading cases against medical practitioners who traded while in possession of material non-public information regarding clinical trials for a drug. SEC v. Lama, Case No. 5:14-cv-00996 (C.D. Cal. Filed May 19, 2014); SEC v. Chu, Case No. 5:14-cv-00995 (C.D. Cal...

Another High Profile SEC Trial Loss – More Steps Backward

The SEC continues to struggle with its swagger. The claim that it has returned is, at best, debatable. Clearly prevailing in the SEC v. Wyly, 10 Civ. 5760 (S.D.N.Y. Verdict May 12, 2014) earlier this month was a major and much need courtroom win for an agency. Yet on the same day the Commission lost...

Athletes, Celebrities and Insider Trading Investigations

The news over the weekend that Phil Mickelson is subject of an insider trading investigation is surprising and not surprising at the same time. Celebrities and high profile athletes will naturally attract a lot of investigator attention when their names show up on lists of suspect trades. Imagine you...

Another Week, Another Insider Trading Trial Loss For the SEC

On Friday, May 30 th a Manhattan jury returned a verdict against the SEC in the long-running and high profile insider trading case, SEC v. Obus. One week later on Friday, June 6, 2014 a jury on the other side of the country sitting in Los Angeles returned a verdict against the SEC in an insider trading...

SEC Files Serial Insider Trading Action

The Commission brought an insider trading action centered on repeated trades in the same shares over a 40 month period. SEC v. Khan, Civil Action No 14-cv-2743 (N. D. Cal. Filed June 13, 2014). The defendants are Saleem Khan, Ammar Akbari, Roshanlal Chaganlal and Ranjan Mendonsa. Mr. Khan has held...

Equity Options and Insider Trading

I am shocked! Shocked that there is insider trading in advance of merger announcements! OK, so I'm not. But, what is surprising is just how much of that insider trading happens via equity options. Seriously. I know you can make a lot of money in equity options, but you're also going to get caught...

Dark Pools, High Speed Trading and the NY AG’s Suit Against Barclays

The New York Attorney General’s insider trading 2.0 investigation is apparently expanding. Initially the investigation concerned the limits of insider trading, pushing the issue into questions more akin to fairness and a parity of information The investigation focused, for example, on questions...

The SEC, Insider Trading, Golf and E-Mails

Insider trading is generally a profit making venture. But not always as a group of golf friends recently learned – and documented in numerous e-mails that may have actually created a better evidentiary trail than the much discussed Galleon wire-tap tapes. SEC v. McPhail, Civil Action No. 1:14-cv...

Former Qualcomm EVP Pleads Guilty to Insider Trading

For former Qualcomm Inc. Executive Vice President Jing Wang the cover-up not only failed but increased his liability. The former executive pleaded guilty this week to securities fraud based on his insider trading, money laundering tied to his efforts to evade detection and admitted to obstruction. U...

Investor Relations Executive Settles SEC Insider Trading Charges

The SEC filed a settled insider trading case against a partner in an investor relations firm who traded securities based on information he obtained from draft press releases he worked on for firm clients. The settled action alleges that the executive was a “temporary” insider and breached...

Third Circuit Rejects Claim That Fiduciary Duty Required For Insider Trading

Insider trading cases frequently turn on the nature of the relationship between the trader and the person who is the source of information. The breach of that relationship of trust and confidence can supply the statutory element of deception, the predicate for a violation of Exchange Act Section 10(b...

SEC Brings Another Insider Trading Case Tied to Golf

Golf is becoming a recurring theme in insider trading cases. Last month the SEC brought an insider trading action against a group of golf friends. That action, detailed here, was supported by a series of e-mails among the group which documented their scheme. Now the SEC has brought another insider trading...

SEC – USAO Charge Investor Relations Executive With Insider Trading

The SEC may be developing theme based insider trading cases. In recent weeks the agency brought two insider trading actions centered on golfing friends. SEC v. O’Neill, Civil Action No. 1:14-cv-13381 (D. Mass. Filed August 18, 2014); SEC v. McPhail, Civil Action No. 1:14-cv-12985 (D. Mass. Filed...

The SEC in the Office Fails to Deter Insider Trader

The theory of “broken windows,” the enforcement approach being pursued by the SEC, is that prosecuting all violations large and small creates deterrence. That comes from a kind of omnipresence, or a cop on the beat impact. In the SEC’s case of course there is no beat or cop so it is...

SEC-USAO Halt Insider Trading Ring

Separating the source of the inside information from the trader with a buffer was supposed to shield everyone from the watchful eye of enforcement officials. If there were questions, research reports would be produced to support the purchase. This was the theory of three friends who used inside information...

Wells Fargo Admits Violating Law, Pays SEC $5 Million Penalty

Wells Fargo was named by the Commission in a proceeding for failing to establish, maintain and enforce policies and procedures to prevent the misuse of inside information. The firm added to its difficulties during the investigation by failing to timely produce records regarding an instance of insider...

SEC Charges Wells Fargo Analyst, Trader With Insider Trading

Analysts reports frequently move the market and are thus considered inside information prior to publication. That is the predicate for an SEC administrative proceeding which charges a Wells Fargo analyst and trader with insider trading. In the Matter of George T. Bolan, Jr., Adm. Proc. File No. 3-16178...