An investment banker, a plumber and money left in a gym bag on a boat have led to insider trading charges being filed by the Securities and Exchange Commission against the two people involved in the scheme, the SEC announced Monday.
Steven McClatchey, the director of an investment bank in New York City, had regular access to highly confidential nonpublic information about impending transactions being pursued for investment bank clients at his job, the SEC says.
He leaked that information to Gary Pusey, the plumber who remodeled the banker’s bathroom and became his friend, the SEC says.
Pusey traded on this information, making $76,000 in illicit profits, the SEC complaint says. In return for the tips, Pusey provided McClatchey with free services during his bathroom remodel and paid him thousands of dollars in cash that he typically placed in McClatchey’s gym bag on his boat or handed to him directly in his garage, the complaint says. The two docked their fishing boats at the same marina on Long Island.
The pair also has been charged criminally in the scheme by the U.S. Attorney’s Office for the Southern District of New York. Pusey pled guilty to the criminal charge last week.
“We will continue enhancing our market surveillance techniques to detect patterns of insider trading and expose schemes, even when alleged perpetrators like McClatchey and Pusey attempt to avoid detection by providing in-person tips and cash payments,” says Joseph Sansone, co-chief of the SEC Enforcement Division’s Market Abuse Unit.
According to the SEC’s complaint filed in federal court in Manhattan, the scheme began in 2014 and involved Pusey purchasing securities in 10 companies before their acquisitions were announced publicly. The complaint seeks a final judgment ordering McClatchey and Pusey to pay disgorgement of their ill-gotten gains plus interest and penalties, and permanently enjoining them from future violations of these provisions of the federal securities laws.