U.S. SECURITIES AND EXCHANGE COMMISSION
Litigation Release No. 22234 / January 24, 2012
SEC v. Robert Ward, Stanley Lewis, Jamie Lewis, and Benjamin Lewis, Civ. Action No. 1:12-CV-00061-SSB-KLL (S.D Ohio, FILED January 24, 2012).
SEC CHARGES FORMER LOAN OFFICER WITH OAK HILL FINANCIAL, INC. AND THREE OTHERS WITH INSIDER TRADING
The Securities and Exchange Commission today charged four people with insider trading in the securities of Oak Hill Financial, Inc. (“Oak Hill”) ahead of a July 20, 2007 announcement that Oak Hill would be acquired by WesBanco, Inc. (Nasdaq: WSBC). The Commission alleges that Robert Ward, who at the time was a loan officer at Oak Hill, tipped his friend, Benjamin Lewis, about the anticipated merger. Benjamin Lewis then tipped his father, Stanley Lewis, who then tipped his daughter, Jamie Lewis. The Lewises made approximately $100,000 from their illegal trading in Oak Hill.
The case was filed in the U.S. District Court for the Southern District of Ohio. The complaint alleges that:
Robert Ward knowingly or recklessly tipped his childhood friend Benjamin Lewis about an imminent merger between Oak Hill and WesBanco. Benjamin Lewis tipped his father, Stanley Lewis, who then tipped his daughter, Jamie Lewis. The Lewises began purchasing Oak Hill stock. All total, Benjamin Lewis, Stanley Lewis and Jamie Lewis realized illicit profits of approximately $108,000.
Without admitting or denying the allegations in the complaint, the four settling defendants have offered to settle the case by consenting to the entry of final judgments permanently enjoining them from violating Section 10(b) of the Securities Exchange Act of 1934 and Rule 10b-5 and agreed to pay disgorgement, prejudgment interest and penalties totaling more than $230,000 as follows:
Benjamin Lewis will pay disgorgement and prejudgment interest totaling $50,209.77. Stanley Lewis will pay disgorgement and prejudgment interest totaling $54,715.77. Jamie Lewis will pay disgorgement and prejudgment interest totaling $17,564.70. Robert Ward is jointly and severally liable with the Lewises for disgorgement and prejudgment interest, all of which has been waived based on a demonstrated inability to pay. A penalty has not been imposed on Robert Ward based on a demonstrated inability to pay. Benjamin Lewis will pay a civil penalty of $44,574.55. Stanley Lewis will pay a civil penalty of $48,842.66. Jamie Lewis will pay a civil penalty of $14,995.58.
The SEC acknowledges the assistance of FINRA in the investigation of this matter.
See also: LR 22233