Seven fund managers and analysts including a former Dell employee have been arrested and charged on suspicion of taking part in an insider trading scheme, which netted them more than $70m.
The arrests were made as part of the FBI's four-year Operation Perfect Hedge, which has already seen more than 60 people charged with similar offences.
The seven men include former Dell employee Sandy Goyal who, through an insider at the computing giant, received quarterly earnings information ahead of their release and passed them on to others involved in the scheme.
According to an SEC complaint filed in federal court in Manhattan, the illicit gains in the Dell insider trades exceeded $62.3m.
Another of the suspects, Danny Kuo, did something similar with Nvidia earnings information, making $15.7m.
"When you have the answer sheet beforehand, it's pretty hard not to ace the test. But cheating on the test and getting away with cheating on the test are two different things," said the FBI's assistant director in charge, Janice K. Fedarcyk.
"If you are engaged in an insider trading conspiracy – passing inside information on to others, or receiving it – what distinguishes you from the dozens who have been charged is not that you haven't been caught, it's that you haven't been caught yet."
The arrests follow the successful prosecution of hedge fund manager and founder of Galleon Group, Raj Rajaratnam, who profited from information fed to him by Intel and IBM insiders, among others.
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