The insider-trading trial of Level Global Investors co-founder Anthony Chiasson and another former hedge fund manager will begin in earnest later today, with opening statements.
Jury selection, which began yesterday, continues; 30 possible panel members were polled by U.S. District Judge Richard Sullivan; one long-time SAC Capital Advisors employee was among those dismissed.
While others also got the cut, including a freelance bassoonist and a psychic claiming to work with law enforcement to find missing children, the SAC connection was a definite deal-breaker. A former co-defendant of Chiasson and former Diamondback Capital Management portfolio manager Todd Newman, Jon Horvath, is a former SAC analyst and is likely to testify at the trial. In addition, Horvath's boss, top SAC manager Michael Steinberg, is an unindicted co-conspirator in the case.
When opening statements begin, likely after lunch today, prosecutors will begin to paint a portrait of two members of a "criminal club" who traded in confidential tips about technology companies and who made $60 million doing so. The defense has yet to show its hand, although prosecutors have attempted to prevent it from using some wiretaps that prosecutors say contain false "exculpatory statements."