Apple’s former top lawyer admits insider trading, could face jail
Apple’s former corporate secretary and director of corporate law has pleaded guilty to six counts of an indictment charging him with securities fraud.
The DoJ announced Thursday:
The former corporate secretary and director of corporate law at Apple today admitted engaging in an insider trading scheme that spanned five years, Attorney for the United States Vikas Khanna announced.
Gene Levoff, 48, of San Carlos, California, pleaded guilty by videoconference before U.S. District Judge William J. Martini to six counts of an indictment charging him with securities fraud. Levoff was initially charged by complaint in February 2019.
Khanna said that Levoff had “betrayed the trust of one of the world’s largest tech companies for his own financial gain” and had used “his position of trust to commit insider trading in order to line his own pockets” despite being responsible for enforcing Apple’s own ban on insider trading.
From February 2011 to April 2016, while working as the top corporate attorney at Apple, Levoff reportedly “misappropriated material, nonpublic information about Apple’s financial results and then executed trades involving the company’s stock.” It is alleged that he used this information to make profits of $227,000 while trading and to avoid losses of $377,000.
Levoff also reportedly repeatedly ignored Apple’s own blackout periods, a standard tool companies use to prevent employees from trading their shares during certain times, usually prior to or during a company earnings call.
Levoff could face a hefty fine or even jail, each count of fraud (he is charged with six) carries a maximum penalty of 20 years in prison and a $5 million fine. He’ll be sentenced in November.