Chinese National Charged with Insider Trading

The Manhattan U.S. Attorney’s Office secured an indictment against a Chinese National for insider trading. The Defendant, Michael Yin, remains at large. U.S. v. Yin, No. 1:14-cr-00494 (S.D.N.Y.).

Over a period of about one year, beginning in March 2016, Mr. Yin is alleged to have obtained inside information from his friend and business associate, Benjamin Chow. The information centered on transactions involving Lattice Semiconductor Corporation and private equity funds that were managed by Mr. Chow. Specifically, as the managing director of one firm and the managing partner of another Mr. Chow secured information concerning the potential merger agreements which he furnished to his friend.

The two men had multiple meetings in Beijing, China and exchanged voice and text messages. Through those communications Mr. Yin secured information regarding each proposed transaction involving Lattice. For example, in one instance Mr. Chow told his friend that they soon expected to execute the merger agreement with Lattice, according to the translation of the conversation. Mr. Yin purchased shares of Lattice the next day. He continued to purchase shares over the next three weeks, acquiring about 2.2 million. Overall Mr. Yin had trading profits of about $5 million. Mr. Yin was charged with one count of conspiracy to commit securities fraud and thirteen counts of securities fraud.

Previously, Mr. Chow was charged with conspiracy and securities fraud in U.S. v. Chow, No. 1:17-cr-00667 (S.D.N.Y.). Following trial a jury found Mr. Chow guilty of one count of conspiracy and seven counts of securities fraud. Sentencing is scheduled for August 20, 2018.

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