Published: Wed, August 08, 2018
People | By Leon Thompson

NY Rep. Christopher Collins indicted on securities fraud charges

NY Rep. Christopher Collins indicted on securities fraud charges

Chris Collins was arrested by the Federal Bureau of Investigation on insider trading charges.

The indictment relates to securities of Innate Immunotherapeutics, an Australian biotechnology company where Rep. Collins served on the board.

Former Health and Human Services Secretary Tom Price was grilled during his confirmation hearing on whether he purchased stocks in Innate Immunotherapetutics after receiving a tip from Collins.

Collins, whose district covers parts of western NY between Buffalo and Rochester, has denied any wrongdoing.

The defendants are accused of multiple counts of securities fraud, as well as one count of wire fraud, one count of conspiracy to commit wire fraud and one count each of making false statements.

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Each charge is punishable by up to 15 years' jail and a fine of not less than five times the proceeds of the illegal activity. He is accused of abusing his power and of misusing funds in a RM42 million (S$14.7m) from the SRC International Sdn Bhd.

The U.S. Attorney's Office in Manhattan will speak about the indictment during a news conference scheduled for noon.

Collins gained prominence for being one of the earliest Capitol Hill backers of President Donald Trump. "It is notable that even the government does not allege that Congressman Collins traded a single share [of Innate stock]". The company developed a drug meant to treat Secondary Progressive Multiple Sclerosis.

Christopher Collins has been indicted on insider trading charges, federal prosecutors announced Wednesday. "We are confident he will be completely vindicated and exonerated", the statement reads.

As Collins is the largest shareholder in the company and his conversation carried the appearance of trading off non-public information, his actions immediately drew suspicion.

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