Hedge Fund, Jail-Bound Ex-Manager Settle Insider Trading Charges

May 13 2008 | 9:31am ET

A Boston-area hedge fund and a former “rogue trader” have settled insider-trading charges, the Securities and Exchange Commission said yesterday.

Burlington, Mass.-based Global Time Capital and its GTC Growth Fund agreed to pay $252,000 in ill-gotten gains, penalties and interest to settle the charges. The fund’s former manager, Michael Tom, will pay $801,000.

Tom pleaded guilty two years ago to criminal insider trading charges. Former Citizens Bank analyst Shegnan Wang, an investor in the GTC Growth Fund, admitted passing on non-public information about Citizens’ planned acquisition of Charter One Bank. Tom then bought Charter One stock and options for the fund, himself and his family, as well as passing on the tip to his brother.

Neither Tom nor Global Time admitted any wrongdoing in the SEC settlement. Global Time called Tom “a rogue trader that it’s cut ties with,” while Tom’s attorney said his client “hopes to move forward with his life.”

Federal prosecutors are trying to put a serious dent in those hopes. Tom is still fighting to stay out of prison, after prosecutors appealed his sentence of three years’ probation, demanding he spend at least three years and one month in prison. In October, the First Circuit Court of Appeals in Boston sided with the Justice Department, citing the “need for some imprisonment.”

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