New York representative Chris Collins announced that he would not seek re-election following his arrest for securities fraud. Investigators say that Collins passed along unreleased information regarding stocks his son and others around him owned.
According to federal prosecutors, Collins informed his son of negative drug trial results for Innate Immunotherapeutics, an Australian firm. Collins was the company’s largest shareholder and a member of the company’s board of directors.
Investigators say that Collins passed inside information to his son, who then passed it to his fiancée’s father. The information leak allowed the men to sell their shares of the stock, avoiding losses that exceeded $750,000. In addition to federal criminal charges, the men also face charges by the Securities and Exchange Commission. The SEC has already settled insider trading charges against the fiancée and her mother.
Prosecutors say that Collins placed several phone calls to family members to pass along the drug trial results. Before the company made its trial results public, Collins encouraged his family members to dump their company stocks. Collins was under investigation at the time of disclosure and held onto his shares to avoid an additional ethics probe. His stocks lost about $17 million in value. Later, Collins made misleading statements to a reporter about when his son sold his company stock.
A House Ethics investigation showed that Collins encouraged other House members to invest in the company. Former Health and Human Services Secretary Tom Price made about $225,000 on a sale of Innate Immunotherapeutics stock. Several other members of the House also reported having invested in the company.
Los Angeles securities fraud lawyer
Securities fraud laws are complex. When you face charges of insider trading, or another investment-related crime, hire securities fraud lawyer Robert Helfend. Mr. Helfend has more than 30 years of experience in criminal defense. He takes federal cases in any US circuit. He also takes state cases in Los Angeles County and throughout Southern California.
Contact Robert Helfend or call toll-free at (800) 834-6434, (310) 456-3317, (818) 591-2809 or (805) 273-5611 for an immediate consultation on your Los Angeles County securities fraud case.
Photo Credit: Michael Swan, via Flickr.com