SEC Lawsuit Against FDA Chemist for Insider Trading

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Insider trading issues seem to reach all levels of society and not just those working in the financial areas of business. I guess when you stop and think if you are working as a chemist and have this type of information ahead of time, it could be tempting. The article continues on to say that he did not use his or his wife’s account but rather seven accounts held by other individuals but eventually the money made it back to the chemist’s account. He profited from investing ahead on 19 investments and sold other short before the negatives reached the general news. No kickback mentioned, he just seemed to be on his own investment path here. Darn it’s getting harder for the FDA to keep folks these days. BD

The Securities and Exchange Commission sued a U.S. Food and Drug Administration chemist, claiming he reaped $3.6 million from trading on confidential information related to drug-approval applications. Cheng Yi Liang, 57, made trades involving 19 companies from as early as July 2006 in advance of at least 27 announcements of FDA decisions on drug applications, the SEC said in a lawsuit filed today at U.S. District Court in Greenbelt, Maryland. The chemist, who worked for the FDA’s Center for Drug Evaluation and Research, violated his duty as a federal employee not to engage in financial transactions using nonpublic government information and not to use such information for his personal benefit, according to the SEC, which is seeking disgorgement of illegal profits and unspecified fines.

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