Litigation Release No. 19966 / January 12, 2007

SEC v. Sonja Anticevic et al., 05 Civ. 6991 (KMW) (S.D.N.Y.)

Former Investment Banker Stanislav Shpigelman Sentenced to 37 Months Imprisonment for Providing Tips on Non-Public Mergers and Acquisitions Transactions to Insider Trading Ring

On January 5, 2007, United States District Judge Kenneth Karas sentenced Stanislav Shpigelman to 37 months imprisonment, to be followed by two years supervised release, based on Shpigelman's guilty plea to one count of securities fraud for his role in a widespread insider trading ring that resulted in at least $6.8 million in illicit gains. In August 2005, the Securities and Exchange Commission ("Commission") originally filed an emergency action alleging insider trading in advance of the August 3, 2005, announcement by Reebok International Ltd. ("Reebok") that it had agreed to be acquired by adidas-Salomon AG ("Adidas"). The Commission subsequently brought charges against Shpigelman in an amended complaint filed on March 11, 2006. Through subsequent amendments, the Commission has charged a total of 17 individual defendants, located in the United States and Europe, as participants in the insider trading ring, involving trading in at least 27 different stocks.

The Commission's complaint alleges that Shpigelman, a former mergers and acquisitions analyst at Merrill Lynch & Co., Inc. ("Merrill Lynch"), leaked confidential information to defendants Eugene Plotkin and David Pajcin concerning at least six mergers or acquisitions that Merrill Lynch was working on, prior to the time the deals became public, including deals between (i) The Proctor & Gamble Company and The Gillette Company; (ii) Novartis AG and Eon Labs, Inc.; (iii) Duke Energy and Cinergy Corp.; (iv) Quest Diagnostics, Inc. and LabOne, Inc.; (v) Celgene Corp. and a company considering acquiring Celgene; and (vi) Reebok and adidas. Plotkin and Pajcin traded on the insider information and passed the insider information on to individuals in the United States and Europe who also traded on it. The Commission's complaint also charges Plotkin and Pajcin with orchestrating two separate insider trading schemes, involving trading based on non-public information obtained from: (i) advance stolen copies of Business Week magazine; and (ii) a federal grand jury in the District of New Jersey that was convened to investigate, among other things, potential accounting fraud at Bristol-Myers Squibb Co.

On December 4, 2006, the Honorable Chief Judge Kimba M. Wood entered an order staying discovery in the Commission's action until the conclusion of the pending criminal proceedings. The criminal trial of Eugene Plotkin is currently scheduled to commence in April 2007.

For information about earlier developments in this matter, please see Litigation Release No. 19775 (July 26, 2006), No. 19696 (May 11, 2006), 19650 (April 11, 2006), No. 19340 (August 19, 2005) and No. 19327 (August 5, 2005)

SEC Complaint in this matter