Feeds

Ex-Microsofties face 20 years in slammer over insider trading

Former staffers allegedly made nearly $400k using confidential info

High performance access to file storage

A former Microsoft senior manager is facing up to 20 years in jail and millions in fines and compensation over allegations he shared confidential information about the firm with his friend and business partner.

The Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) filed a complaint alleging Brian Jorgenson had handed off insider information to Sean Stokke three different times, sharing the company's plans with Barnes & Noble's Nook unit as well as quarterly financial data ahead of the information going public.

Jorgenson and Stokke, who also used to work at Microsoft but wasn't with the firm at the time of the alleged securities laws breaches, wanted to start their own investment fund - BioHawks Investment Group. The SEC's civil complaint alleged the pair were going to use earnings from the alleged securities violation for the venture. Jorgenson and Stokke also face a criminal complaint from federal prosecutors.

Jorgenson has been vocal about his guilt with the media, giving interviews to papers like The Seattle Times in which he said he wanted to "man up" and take responsibility.

The former Microsoftie is facing two decades of potential jail time and a maximum $5m fine in a criminal case brought by the FBI as well as the prospect of coming up with the nearly $400,000 he and Stokke allegedly made if the SEC wins the civil case it brought yesterday.

According to the SEC filing (PDF), Jorgenson learned about Microsoft's proposed million-dollar investment in Barnes & Noble's Nook unit at least 12 days before the public announcement in April last year. He then allegedly took the information to Stokke and they allegedly agreed to buy call options in B&N - agreements that give an investor the right to buy a share at a certain price, which becomes profitable if the shares go up. That specific trade, which only cost around $14,000, ended up netting over $182,000.

Altogether, the US Attorney in Seattle charged the pair with 35 counts of insider trading (PDF).

US Attorney Jenny Durkan said in a statement that her office would "vigorously prosecute" any insider trading.

“For every stock market winner, there is a loser, and trading on confidential inside information is a cheater's way of gaining at the expense of others,” she said. “This conduct hurts companies, hurts individuals, and shakes faith in our financial markets. ®

High performance access to file storage

More from The Register

next story
Android engineer: We DIDN'T copy Apple OR follow Samsung's orders
Veep testifies for Samsung during Apple patent trial
MtGox chief Karpelès refuses to come to US for g-men's grilling
Bitcoin baron says he needs another lawyer for FinCEN chat
Did a date calculation bug just cost hard-up Co-op Bank £110m?
And just when Brit banking org needs £400m to stay afloat
One year on: diplomatic fail as Chinese APT gangs get back to work
Mandiant says past 12 months shows Beijing won't call off its hackers
Don't let no-hire pact suit witnesses call Steve Jobs a bullyboy, plead Apple and Google
'Irrelevant' character evidence should be excluded – lawyers
EFF: Feds plan to put 52 MILLION FACES into recognition database
System would identify faces as part of biometrics collection
Big Content goes after Kim Dotcom
Six studios sling sueballs at dead download destination
Ex-Tony Blair adviser is new top boss at UK spy-hive GCHQ
Robert Hannigan to replace Sir Iain Lobban in the autumn
Alphadex fires back at British Gas with overcharging allegation
Brit colo outfit says it paid for 347KVA, has been charged for 1940KVA
Jack the RIPA: Blighty cops ignore law, retain innocents' comms data
Prime minister: Nothing to see here, go about your business
prev story

Whitepapers

Securing web applications made simple and scalable
In this whitepaper learn how automated security testing can provide a simple and scalable way to protect your web applications.
Five 3D headsets to be won!
We were so impressed by the Durovis Dive headset we’ve asked the company to give some away to Reg readers.
HP ArcSight ESM solution helps Finansbank
Based on their experience using HP ArcSight Enterprise Security Manager for IT security operations, Finansbank moved to HP ArcSight ESM for fraud management.
The benefits of software based PBX
Why you should break free from your proprietary PBX and how to leverage your existing server hardware.
Mobile application security study
Download this report to see the alarming realities regarding the sheer number of applications vulnerable to attack, as well as the most common and easily addressable vulnerability errors.