Republican Rep. Chris Collins of New York was arrested on securities fraud charges for insider trading, which he allegedly committed during the annual Congressional Picnic at the White House.
Collins reportedly received an email from the head of the Australian biotech firm Innate Immunotherapeutics who told him “extremely bad news” about a massive drug trial failure, notes RawStory.com.
Collins allegedly called his son, Cameron Collins, to share the “material, nonpublic information” about the company’s stock so that his son could “could use that information to make timely trades in Innate stock and tip others.”
The indictment says: “The following morning… Cameron Collins placed an online order with his brokerage firm to sell approximately 16,508 shares of Innate on the U.S. OTC
market. This order was executed… when the U.S. OTC market opened.”
The indictment claims the insider trading scheme helped the defendants “avoid over $768,000 in losses that they would have otherwise incurred if they had sold their stock in Innate” after the nonpublic information had been released.
Collins’ son, Cameron, and Stephen Zarsky, the father of Cameron Collins’ fiancée were also charged.
Collins’ arrest was cheered by bystanders when MSNBC’s host Hallie Jackson announced it during a live show.