NY congressman charged with insider trading

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The fraud counts relate to securities of an Australian biotechnology company called Innate Immunotherapeutics, where the congressman served on the board.

Cameron Collins is accused of passing on that information to his fiancee's father, Stephen Zarsky, and others, who also benefited financially from the insider knowledge.

Collins, a Republican from NY, served on the board of an Australian biotechnology company called Innate Immunotherapeutics, and was also the company's largest shareholder.

"Access to this kind of information carries with it significant responsibility, especially those in society who hold a position of trust", said William Sweeney, assistant director of the FBI New York field office.

"It is notable that even the government does not allege that Congressman Collins traded a single share of Innate Therapeutics stock".

Chris Collins' lawyers responded swiftly, insisting he will be "completely vindicated".

The charging documents portray a scramble by the congressman and others in the wake of bad news about the drug trial.

The charges were announced and the indictment unsealed in New York City on Wednesday.

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A USA congressman has been accused of using inside information to make illicit stock trades. "Federal prosecutors said Collins tipped his son to the failure of a test drug for multiple sclerosis", he writes.

The New York Republican's son avoided $570,000 (£442,000) in losses thanks to the tip-off, says the indictment.

Attorneys for Mr Collins said in a statement that they will "mount a vigorous defence to clear his good name".

Collins has denied any wrongdoing. By the time he sold the shares in February 2017, they were worth roughly 70 cents each, giving him a profit of more than $150,000, according to ProPublica.

Collins is estimated to be the 13th wealthiest member of Congress, with a projected net worth of $44 million.

Collins' latest sale of Innate Immunotherapeutics holdings was on June 20, 2018 and valued between $15,000 and $50,000 according to House periodic transaction reports. Over-the-counter trading continued, however, in the USA, where Cameron Collins' and Zarky's shares were held. The congressman allegedly shared non-public information with his son, Cameron, that spurred a series of trades based on insider information.

Democrats made an issue of Price's purchase at his Senate confirmation hearings in early 2017, after the Wall Street Journal reported that company officials said Price was allowed to buy the stocks at a low price.

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