Level Global Co-Founder Gets Six-And-A-Half Years

May 13 2013 | 3:01pm ET

Level Global Investors co-founder Anthony Chiasson was sentenced to six-and-a-half years in prison for insider-trading.

The sentence, handed down this morning, was the low end of the range suggested by Chiasson's own lawyers last month. Federal sentencing guidelines call for a term of between 10 and 13 years.

U.S. District Judge Richard Sullivan imposed the shorter sentence despite agreeing with prosecutors that eight to 10 years was the proper range. He also ordered Chiasson to pay a $5 million fine and said he would set forfeiture later.

Chiasson was convicted in December of insider-trading alongside former Diamondback Capital Management trader Todd Newman, who was sentenced to four years in prison. Prosecutors argued that Chiasson earned Level Global $68 million trading on confidential information passed to him by his former analyst, Spyridion Adondakis, who cooperated with the investigation.

"What I keep coming back to is this crime, these crimes, were committed over a long period of time, over a time when you were already fabulously wealthy," Sullivan said. "I don't know if I've ever sentenced someone as wealthy as you. It's hard to understand why someone would risk something like that."

But the news was not all good for Chiasson today: Sullivan rejected his request to remain free pending his appeal, and ordered him to report to a federal prison camp in upstate new York within 90 days.

Sullivan also chided Chiasson for chewing gum during the sentencing hearing.

"You conducted yourself with dignity—except for chewing gum," the judge said.

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