A former top Apple lawyer who worked on combatting insider trading has been indicted on charges of wires and security fraud. The U.S. Attorney in New Jersey indicted Gene Levoff on six charges on Thursday.
Blackout Periods Allegedly Violated
The indictment alleged that Mr. Levoff traded stock during so-called “blackout” periods prior to the release of earnings reports. Employees are not allowed to buy or sell shares in the firm during this time.
A press release issued by U.S. Attorney’s Office did not actually mention Apple by name. It only referred to “a global technology company headquartered in Cupertino, California.” It called Apple “Company-1” elsewhere in the document. The press release said:
This scheme to defraud Company-1 and its shareholders allowed Levoff to realize profits of approximately $227,000 on certain trades and to avoid losses of approximately $377,000 on others,” according to the press release. When Levoff discovered that Company-1 had posted strong revenue and net profit for a given financial quarter, he purchased large quantities of stock, which he later sold for a profit once the market reacted to the news.
Mr. Levoff joined Apple in 2008, according to the indictment. The scheme is alleged to have taken place over five years. The Securities and Exchange Commission previously filed a complaint against Mr. Levoff. This, however, is a criminal case. If found guilty, Mr. Levoff could face up to 20-years in jail.