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New Jersey case involves insider trading

Most of our New Jersey readers probably associate the term "white collar crimes" with offenses like embezzlement or credit card fraud. But there is another charge that can be lumped into this category, and it has landed some high profile individuals in hot water: insider trading.

For those who don't know, insider trading usually involves allegations that someone improperly used information about a corporate entity that is publicly traded on a stock exchange in order to buy or sell stock for a profit. This type of offense most often includes two requirements: someone who has access to the information in question, and someone to buy or sell the stock involved.

If recent reports turn out to be true, these two requirements were met in an alleged insider trading scheme in New Jersey. The reports indicate that a law clerk who worked for a big-time law firm had an illegal arrangement with a stockbroker. The two men are alleged to have used a middleman to exchange information, which primarily consisted of the law clerk passing on information to the stockbroker, who then used the information to make illegal stock transactions.

Anyone who is facing allegations of committing white collar crimes, like the two men in this insider trading situation, are going to be dealing with an aggressive prosecution effort. While many people may say that this type of criminal offense doesn't have a victim, law enforcement authorities will point out that the information in question is often privileged, and therefore whoever the information was taken from is the victim - often with a significantly negative financial impact. The two men facing federal charges in New Jersey will have a tough time crafting a criminal defense strategy if this is the case in their situation.

Source: The Wall Street Journal, "Law Clerk, Stockbroker Charged With Insider Trading," Michael Calia, March 19, 2014

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