Trial Of Ex-Primary Global Exec. Begins

Aug 31 2011 | 2:42pm ET

The second trial in the expert-network insider-trading crackdown opened today, with former Primary Global Research sales executive James Fleishman facing up to 25 years in prison on conspiracy charges.

Fleishman is accused of acting as a conduit for confidential information between Primary Global's consultants and its clients, including hedge funds. He is one of 15 people arrested in the case; a dozen have pleaded guilty, including a handful of former Primary Global consultants. Two of them, Mark Longoria and Daniel DeVore, will testify against Fleishman.

A jury was selected for the roughly three-week trial this morning. Opening statements were set to begin this afternoon.

U.S. District Jed Rakoff, who is presiding over the trial, has barred statements about phone calls arranged by Primary Global that Fleishman made to the Federal Bureau of Investigation. But he earlier refused to toss the wiretapped conversations that are at the heart of the government's case against him.

The first trial in the case resulted in the conviction of former Primary Global consultant Winifred Jiau in June. Earlier this week, the only other person arrested in the case to neither plead guilty nor be found guilty, accused Jiau tipster Stanley Ng, made his first appearance in a New York courtroom following his arrest in California earlier this month.

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