U.S. SECURITIES AND EXCHANGE COMMISSION
LITIGATION RELEASE NO. 17649 / August 1, 2002
United States v. Anthony Chrysikos and Michael Martello, 02 Mag. 1423 (S.D.N.Y. filed July 26, 2002).
U.S. ATTORNEY FOR THE SOUTHERN DISTRICT OF NEW YORK CHARGES FORMER GE CAPITAL VP, TOGETHER WITH AMERICAN KUNG-FU INSTRUCTOR, WITH INSIDER TRADING
Traded Immediately Ahead of GE Capital Bid for Heller Financial
The Commission announced today that on July 26, 2002, the United States Attorney for the Southern District of New York filed a criminal complaint charging Anthony Chrysikos and Michael Martello with insider trading immediately ahead of the July 30, 2001, initial public announcement of a contemplated business combination between General Electric Capital Corp and Heller Financial, Inc. GE Capital is a subsidiary of the General Electric Company. The complaint charges that Chrysikos, at the time a Vice President of Finance in GE Capital's Aircraft Services Division and a member of the GE Capital team that was responsible for reviewing documentation in connection with the Heller Financial transaction, conveyed material nonpublic information to Martello, an American Kung-Fu instructor and Web page designer living in Taipei, Taiwan, who then traded on the basis of that information. If convicted, each faces a maximum sentence of five years in prison on one conspiracy count, as well as fines of the greater of $250,000 or twice the gross gain resulting from the offense, and ten years in prison on each of four securities fraud counts, as well as a maximum fine of the greater of $1 million or twice the gross gain resulting from the offense. The U.S. Attorney's Office announced that Chrysikos surrendered to federal authorities on Friday, July 26, 2002, and was released on a $350,000 personal recognizance bond. Martello surrendered to federal authorities on Monday, July 29, 2002.
On March 7, 2002, the Commission filed a civil injunctive action in the United States District Court for the Southern District of New York against Martello and Chrysikos, alleging that they engaged in tipping and insider trading immediately ahead of the GE Capital bid for Heller Financial. The Commission's complaint alleges that Chrysikos tipped Martello by means of telephone conversations with Martello's mother on July 26 and 27, 2001. The Commission alleged that Chrysikos and Martello each violated Sections 10(b) and 14(e) of the Securities Exchange Act of 1934 ("Exchange Act") and Exchange Act Rules 10b-5 and 14e-3. The Commission's complaint also named Martello's mother, Marie Martello, as a relief defendant, and the Commission's filings with the District Court sought certain emergency relief, including a freeze of certain brokerage and bank accounts that received proceeds from the illegal trades. The Commission's action is styled Securities and Exchange Commission v. Anthony Chrysikos and Michael Martello, Defendants, and Marie Martello, Relief Defendant, 02 CV 1825 (HB-DF) (S.D.N.Y. filed March 7, 2002). The U.S. District Court subsequently granted the Commission its requested emergency relief. The Commission's action remains pending before the District Court, with a current trial date of January 2003.
See Litigation Rel. No. 17404 (March 7, 2002).