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Inside Trader Looking at a Long Stretch

MANHATTAN (CN) - Former Atlanta-based investment adviser Scott Allen pleaded guilty Monday to federal inside-trading charges: conspiracy and seven counts of securities fraud, the U.S. Attorney's Office said.

Prosecutors said Allen, 45, a former investment adviser for Mercer LLC, that he gave co-conspirator John Bennett inside information about the April 2008 acquisition of Millennium Pharmaceuticals by Takeda Pharmaceuticals, and the 2009 purchase of Sepracor by Dainippon Sumitomo Pharma.

Bennett, a film producer and former "investment professional" made more than $1.1 million by trading on the inside information, prosecutors said.

The indictment and plea agreement did not identify Mercer LLC, calling it only a "global human-resources consulting firm." Mercer was identified in wire service reports.

Allen sold the inside information to Bennett for $100,000, according to the U.S. Attorney's Office.

Bennett, 49, of Norwalk, Conn., pleaded guilty in November 2011 to conspiracy and two counts of securities fraud. His sentencing date has not been set.

Allen will be sentenced on Aug. 20. Securities fraud is punishable by up to 20 years in prison and a fine of up to $5 million, conspiracy by up to five years and a $250,000 fine.

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