Mass. Hits Hedge Fund For Insider-Trading On Expert Network Info.

Mar 10 2011 | 1:07pm ET

Massachusetts regulators have accused a Boston-area hedge fund of insider-trading, the latest such case to involve hedge funds' use of expert networks.

Risk Reward Capital Management's James Silverman received nonpublic information about at least two pharmaceutical companies from Guidepoint Global consultants, the lawsuit, filed by Secretary of the Commonwealth William Galvin, alleges. Guidepoint has not been accused of any wrongdoing, and the alleged tipsters were not identified in the complaint.

Galvin said that Silverman used the insider information to revive the flagging fortunes of his $24 million RRC Bio Fund. The hedge fund, like most others, took a beating in 2008, but posted back-to-back years of 50%-plus returns in 2009 and last year.

"With access to Guidepoint, the fund began a dramatic resurgence," the lawsuit alleges. "These returns were generated, at least in part, upon Silverman's receipt of material non-public information he received through Guidepoint consultants."

Galvin's allegations mirror those made by the Justice Department in their ongoing insider-trading probe. Eight people with ties to another expert-network firm, Primary Global Research, have been charged in that case.

Silverman allegedly got insider information on drug trials conducted by Ariad Pharmaceuticals, based, like RRC, in Cambridge, Mass., and California-based Questor Pharmaceuticals.

"Silverman apparently also knew that he should not have received this information, as he deleted his notes containing the study results prior to producing them to the [Securities] Division in response to its subpoena," the lawsuit adds.

Guidepoint, for its part, said it has "cooperated fully" with the investigation.


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