A former attorney for SeaWorld pleaded guilty to securities fraud in an insider trading scheme. According to prosecutors, the man used unreleased earnings information to time a major stock purchase.
The man purchased 18,000 shares of the company’s stock just days before it announced better-than-expected quarterly earnings. Following the announcement, the share price rose more than $4.25 per share. He then sold the stock, reaping a profit of nearly $65,000.
By purchasing company shares, the man violated both company policy and federal securities laws. The man should have sought permission from the company’s general counsel to both purchase and sell shares. Federal authorities contacted the company late in 2018 to inquire about the stock purchase and sale. SeaWorld conducted an internal investigation and determined that the man had used inside information to make his purchase decision.
In federal court last week, the man pleaded guilty to securities fraud as part of a plea agreement. The US District Court for the Middle District of Florida has not yet set a date for sentencing. At sentencing, the court will determine penalties, including incarceration, disgorgement and fines. The maximum penalty for insider trading is 20 years in prison and as much as a $5 million fine.
Federal securities fraud attorney
Investment fraud can take many forms, including insider trading. When you face charges related to profiteering on inside information, hire an experienced securities fraud attorney like Robert Helfend. Mr. Helfend has more than 30 years of experience in criminal defense. He takes federal criminal cases in any circuit in the United States.
Federal authorities aggressively pursue investment fraud and insider trading. Your best defense includes an experienced criminal defense attorney who will represent you throughout the judicial process. An experienced attorney will work hard to get the charges against you reduced or dropped. If you opt to take a plea deal, your attorney will work toward the best possible resolution for your case. This includes reducing any potential prison term and/or fines that may be associated with your case.
Contact Robert Helfend or call toll-free at (800) 834-6434, (805) 273-5611, (310) 456-3317 or (818) 591-2809 for an immediate consultation on your Ventura County securities fraud case.
Photo Credit: Josh Hallett, via Flickr.com