(Bloomberg News) Kenneth T. Robinson pleaded guilty to his role in an insider-trading scheme spanning 17 years that relied on merger-and-acquisition tips stolen from law firms.
Robinson, 45, admitted to securities fraud and conspiracy to commit securities fraud charges at a plea hearing today in federal court in Newark, N.J. He said he was the middleman between attorney Matthew H. Kluger and stock trader Garrett D. Bauer, who were charged last week in the $32 million scheme.
The scheme involved nonpublic data on companies including Sun Microsystems Inc., 3Com Corp. and Acxiom Corp., Robinson admitted. Bauer made more than $30 million on the scheme, Robinson more than $875,000 and Kluger more than $500,000, U.S. Attorney Paul Fishman said after their arrests on April 6.
Robinson is cooperating with U.S. investigators, Fishman said after the plea hearing.
"He is continuing to give information to the government about all of the deals he is aware of," Fishman said in an interview.
Robinson today told U.S. District Judge Katharine Hayden that he conspired with Bauer and Kluger from 1994 to 2011 and that he passed along company secrets Kluger took from law firms. He was released on $2 million bail after today's hearing.
Robinson admitted he passed on tips about deals that Kluger learned when he worked as an associate for New York-based Cravath, Swaine & Moore LLP from 1994 to 1997 and Skadden, Arps, Slate, Meagher & Flom LLP, another New York firm, from 1998 to 2001. He also said Kluger passed on tips that he stole from Fried Frank Harris Shriver & Jacobson after he left Skadden Arps.
After a hiatus, the scheme resumed in December 2005 and continued until March 2011, when Kluger worked in the Washington office of Wilson, Sonsini, Goodrich & Rosati PC, authorities said.
The criminal case is U.S. v. Bauer, 11-mj-3536, U.S. District Court, District of New Jersey (Newark).