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تاريخ التسجيل: Jun 2019
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افتراضي Ex-Rep. Chris Collins Pleads Guilty to Securities Fraud Charges

It was an opportunity that Representative Chris Collins, a Republican from Western New York, believed was too good to pass up. He was so confident of his investment in an Australian drug company that he hawked it to his children, his staffers, even other members of Congress.
“One of the things was, â€کWho in Congress have you talked with about Innate?’â€‌ Mr. Collins said of the company, Innate Immunotherapeutics, in a 2017 interview. “The bigger question would be: Who haven’t I talked to?â€‌
A version of that question became Mr. Collins’s undoing. He pleaded guilty on Tuesday to conspiracy to commit securities fraud and lying to federal investigators, and faced the expected guilty pleas by his son and the father of his son’s fiancأ©e later this week.
The charges revolved around Mr. Collins’s significant financial ties to Innate; he owned nearly 17 percent of the company’s total stock, making him one of the largest shareholders. He was also a member of its board of directors.


According to prosecutors, Mr. Collins, who was first elected in 2012, was at a congressional picnic in June 2017 when he learned, through a private company email, that Innate had failed a critical trial for its only product, a drug to cure multiple sclerosis. Immediately, Mr. Collins called his son, Cameron Collins, to encourage him to sell his shares before the test results became public, prosecutors said.
The congressman called his son several times in quick succession before they finally connected on the seventh try, according to call logs.
The tip helped Cameron Collins avoid more than $570,000 in losses when the company’s stock price later plummeted, prosecutors said.
Cameron Collins, as well as Stephen Zarsky, the father of Cameron Collins’s fiancأ©e, are expected to plead guilty on Thursday. Cameron Collins had advised Mr. Zarsky and his daughter to sell their shares, prosecutors said, and Mr. Zarsky also passed the tip to others.
The younger Mr. Collins’s fiancأ©e was not charged.
The congressman himself, who was ranked as one of the wealthiest members of Congress, was not accused of making any trades. But just the act of passing along information can, under some circumstances, constitute an insider-trading violation.


Mr. Collins is not the first elected official to face federal charges intertwined with a son. Last year, the former majority leader of the New York State Senate, Dean G. Skelos, was convicted of public corruption after prosecutors said he pressured business executives to pay his son about $300,000, through various no-show or low-show jobs. His son, Adam, was also convicted.
Mr. Skelos’s deputy, State Senator Thomas W. Libous, was separately accused of lying to federal authorities about the circumstances of his own son’s employment. He was convicted but the conviction was later vacated after his death; his son, Matthew Libous, was convicted of federal tax charges.
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الكلمات الدليلية (Tags - تاق )
charges, chris, collins, ex-rep., fraud, guilty, pleads, securities


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