More arrests in US clampdown on insider trading

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The Independent Online

Four more hedge fund executives have been arrested in the US authorities' war against insider trading.

The FBI swooped on addresses across the country yesterday morning, serving indictments on traders in New York, Massachusetts and Los Angeles. The charges were based on evidence turned up in earlier raids on the firms involved and co-operation from former business associates of the accused men.

In all, seven people were involved in an insider trading ring that netted $61.8m (£40m) in profit from trading in shares of the computer giant Dell, the government alleges.

As well as the four men arrested, three more have already pleaded guilty to involvement, it was revealed.

These included a former Dell employee, Sandeep Goyal, who is said to have learned insider information from an employee in the company's investor relations department and passed it on to his network of hedge fund associates.

The group traded in and out of Dell shares based on his tips in 2008 and 2009, according to a criminal complaint in New York yesterday.

Anthony Chiasson, who co-founded the Level Global Investors hedge fund, surrendered to the FBI in Manhattan, hours after the agency raided his home in search of him. Level Global shut down last year after the FBI investigation into Mr Chiasson was first revealed.

The other men arrested were: Todd Newman, who once headed technology trading for Diamondback Capital Management in Boston; Dan Kuo of Los Angeles-based Whittier Capital; and Jon Hovarth, currently employed at Sigma Capital Management, an affiliate of hedge fund titan Steven Cohen's $14bn SAC Capital.

More than 50 people have now been arrested or charged in overlapping insider trading investigations that began in 2009.