Level Global Co-Founder Seeks Shorter Prison Term

May 1 2013 | 12:57am ET

Level Global Investors co-founder Anthony Chiasson's lawyers this week pleaded for leniency for their client, whom they called "an extraordinary man."

Chiasson was convicted in December of insider-trading, and federal sentencing guidelines call for a jail term of 13 years. But his lawyers told U.S. District Judge Richard Sullivan, who will impose sentence on May 13, that so much time in prison would be "draconian," and instead asked for between six-and-a-half and eight years.

"Anthony Chiasson is an extraordinary man," lawyers Greg Morvillo and Reed Weingarten wrote. "But for the conduct that brings him before the court, Anthony has led an exemplary life."

Morvillo and Weingarten noted Chiasson's charitable contributions, from his high school and college to the Robin Hood and Michael J. Fox foundations.

Prosecutors said that Level Global earned $68 million in illicit profits trading on confidential information passed to Chiasson by his former analyst, Spyridion Adondakis, who cooperated with the investigation.

Chiasson's lawyers also asked that their client "not be required to forfeit gains of any co-conspirators," a reference to Level Global co-founder David Ganek. Sullivan has ruled that Ganek is an unindicted co-conspirator in the case, although he has not been charged with any wrongdoing.

Level Global allegedly earned more than $21.6 million on trades made by Ganek.

"Fundamental fairness dictates that Mr. Chiasson should not have to forfeit money Ganek obtained while Ganek gets to keep it," Morvillo and Weingarten wrote. "If, despite Adondakis' testimony, the government still believes that Ganek is a co-conspirator, it can get any monies it believes to be tainted from Mr. Ganek himself."

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