NEWARK (CN) – A director of Bristol-Myers Squibb was arrested Thursday and charged with making more than $300,000 by trading on inside information, the SEC said.
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The SEC sued Robert Ramnarine, 45, of East Brunswick, N.J., in Federal Court. The SEC said in a statement that Ramnarine was arrested Thursday in a parallel criminal case brought by the U.S. Attorney.
A Bristol-Myers employee since 1997, Ramnarine worked in its treasury department since 2008 and in July this year became the assistant treasurer of capital markets for the company. Some of his illegal trades occurred as recently as 3 weeks ago, the SEC said in its statement.
In that statement, the SEC said that Ramnarine “made more than $300,000 in illegal profits by misusing nonpublic information he obtained while helping Bristol-Myers Squibb evaluate whether to acquire three other pharmaceutical companies. He used multiple personal brokerage accounts to illegally trade in stock options of these potential target companies. Prior to some trading, Ramnarine conducted Internet research from his Bristol computer to determine whether he could be detected by regulators. He searched for such phrases as ‘can stock option be traced to purchaser’ and ‘illegal insider trading options trace’ and viewed such articles as ‘Ways to Avoid Insider Trading.’ Ramnarine even viewed a press release on the SEC’s website announcing an enforcement action arising from illegal trading in call options in advance of an acquisition announcement.”
The SEC asked the judge to freeze Ramnarine’s brokerage accounts. It also seeks disgorgement, penalties, an injunction and treble damages.