Ex-SAC hedgie arrested in US insider scheme

City A.M. Reporter
A FORMER hedge fund manager who worked for a fund affiliated with Steven A Cohen’s SAC Capital was arrested yesterday in what US prosecutors are calling “the most lucrative insider-trading scheme ever”.

Mathew Martoma, who worked for CR Intrinsic Investors in Stamford, a unit of SAC Capital, has been accused of making more than $276m in illicit profits based on tips about Elan Corp and Wyeth, which was bought by Pfizer in late 2009.

Authorities contend Martoma and SAC Capital’s CR Intrinsic made more than $276m in illegal profits or avoided losses in July 2008 by trading ahead of a negative public announcement involving clinical trial results for an Alzheimer’s drug jointly developed by Elan and Wyeth.

Martoma’s lawyer, Charles Stillman, said his client was an “exceptional portfolio manager” and he is confident that Martoma will be exonerated. A spokesman for SAC Capital and Cohen, who was not charged, said he was not immediately prepared to comment.

The criminal complaint filed by federal prosecutors and a related civil lawsuit filed by the US SEC contend Martoma got insider information from a doctor, who once worked as a consultant for a so-called expert network.