A former senior trader at the stockbroking firm Cazenove has appeared in court, becoming only the second case of City workers facing criminal prosecution by the Financial Services Authority.
Malcolm Calvert, a 63-year-old Cazenove lifer, yesterday pleaded not guilty to 12 charges of insider dealing over a two-year period.
The case, before City of Westminster magistrates, is the second of three criminal proceedings that the stock market watchdog intends to bring this year.
The hearing was adjourned until 11 September with Mr Calvert remanded on conditional bail.
Mr Calvert, known during his years on the trading floor as "Streaky", joined Cazenove in 1961 and worked his way up to a partnership in 1988.
He was a well-known figure in the City, regularly hitting the financial diary columns. He retired from the company in 2000.
The charges cover share dealings from between 2003 to 2005.
The FSA was given criminal powers to target the City in 2001, and the director of enforcement, Margaret Cole, has been toughening the regulator's stance recently, since it was accused of being a light touch compared with its US counterparts.
The regulator said in a report last year that it suspected insider dealing in a quarter of all takeover deals in the UK.
So far, it has found criminal cases tough to prosecute, blaming the high burden of proof as a critical hurdle. This has caused the regulator to predominantly rely on civil prosecutions, which are easier to prove.
The first case was launched this January, against Christopher McQuoid and James William Melbourne, who were accused of profiting from inside information as Motorola made a £103m offer for TTP Communications in 2006.
Both have pleaded not guilty and the case is ongoing. With Mr Calvert, these make up two of the three enforcement actions announced by Ms Cole earlier this year.