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Indian-origin executive pleads guilty to insider trading in US

He worked as a vice president and risk management specialist for a Manhattan-based investment bank

Press Trust of India  |  New York 

US Flag  Photo: Wikipedia
US Flag Photo: Wikipedia

A 42-year old Indian-origin executive has pleaded guilty to charges of engaging in a scheme to commit in which he made thousands of dollars of illegal profits.

Avaneesh Krishnamoorthy worked as a vice president and risk management specialist for a Manhattan-based investment

He pled guilty yesterday to a criminal Information charging him with engaging in the scheme.

He made over $78,000 by trading in the stock and options of three publicly traded companies based on material nonpublic information he misappropriated from the investment and its parent company, Acting for the Southern District of Joon Kim said.

He pled guilty to one count of securities fraud, which carries a maximum sentence of 20 years in prison and a maximum fine of $5 million. He is scheduled to be sentenced in November this year.

"As he admitted in federal court, Avaneesh Krishnamoorthy abused his position as an investment executive to get nonpublic information about several companies and then trade on it. We remain committed to prosecuting financial professionals whose greed drives them to break the law," Kim said.

According to allegations in documents, as a vice president and risk management specialist, Krishnamoorthy was given access to material, nonpublic information concerning mergers and acquisitions in which the investment was potentially going to be retained.

In November 2016, the investment was contacted about financing the acquisition by a private equity fund of technology company Neustar whose shares are traded on the Stock Exchange.

Krishnamoorthy received multiple emails regarding the investment bank's potential involvement in the transaction, which also summarized the mechanics of the deal.

In violation of the company's policies and in breach of his duties to the company and its clients, Krishnamoorthy used this material nonpublic information to acquire Neustar stock and options. In the days and weeks after receiving the emails, Krishnamoorthy purchased numerous Neustar call options and hundreds of shares of Neustar stock before the public announcement of the transaction.

He did not reveal these trades or the existence of the underlying brokerage accounts to the company. The price of Neustar stock increased by approximately 20 per cent following the public announcement of the fund's acquisition of Neustar in December 2016.

Krishnamoorthy also used material nonpublic information that he received from the company to make profitable trades in securities of two other companies.

(Only the headline and picture of this report may have been reworked by the Business Standard staff; the rest of the content is auto-generated from a syndicated feed.)

First Published: Fri, August 11 2017. 15:45 IST
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