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Tuesday
Jul222014

Ex-Qualcomm exec cops to insider trading, money laundering

A former president of Qualcomm Inc.'s global business operations pleaded guilty Monday to insider trading in shares of the mobile phone chipmaker and a company it bought in 2011, and to a related money laundering charge.

Jing Wang entered his plea before U.S. District Judge William Hayes in San Diego, the DOJ said.

Wang's insider trading occurred three times over a ten-month period in 2010 and 2011.

In early 2010, he bought $277,739 of Qualcomm stock before the company’s announcement of a dividend increase and stock repurchase program.   

In December 2010, while in Hong Kong, Wang bought Atheros stock hours after Qualcomm’s board of directors made a nonpublic offer to purchase Atheros.   

A few weeks later in January 2011, Wang directed his broker to sell the Atheros stock through an offshore account of Unicorn Global Enterprises, and used the proceeds to purchase Qualcomm stock, one day before Qualcomm announced record earnings.

Wang made about $250,000 from the illegal trades, the DOJ said.

He also pleaded guilty to laundering the insider trading proceeds through a shell company based in the British Virgin Islands.

Wang admitted in his plea agreement to obstructing justice by conspiring with his brother, Bing Wang, and his broker to fabricate evidence that the trades were done by Bing Wang.

Wang's sentenced is scheduled for November 17.

Bing Wang, believed to be in China, is wanted on an international arrest warrant.

Gary Yin, Jing Wang's broker, pleaded guilty to conspiring to obstruct justice and launder money. He scheduled to be sentenced on September 15.

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Julie DiMauro is the executive editor of FCPA Blog and can be reached here.