Hedge Fund Tipster's Sister Settles With SEC

Apr 9 2013 | 10:08am ET

The sister and insider source of a former expert networker has settled allegations she passed confidential information about her employer to her brother.

ThanhHa Bao agreed to pay $145,000 and to be barred from serving as an officer or director of a public company for five years, the SEC said yesterday. Bao allegedly gave her brother, Tai Nguyen, confidential quarterly earnings information about medical-device maker Abaxis Inc., where she worked in the finance department. Her brother pleaded guilty last year to passing those tips to two hedge fund managers, Barai Capital Management founder Samir Barai and former SAC Capital Advisors analyst Noah Freeman, and was sentenced last month to one year in prison.

The $145,000 represents Nguyen's profits from his own trading on the Abaxis tips, which he allegedly received between 2006 and 2009.

Bao was fired by Abaxis after her brother's arrest, a fact that may have won him some leniency at sentencing. Bao was not charged criminally.

"When corporate insiders leak confidential information to a select few, the integrity of our markets is undermined," the SEC's Sanjay Wadhwa said. "Abaxis entrusted ThanhHa Bao with market-moving information, and she violated that trust to financially benefit her family."

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