The chief executive of Innate Immunotherapeutics had “bad news to report,” according to court records. A multiple sclerosis drug the Australian firm had been developing failed a clinical test.
A minute later, according to court records, Collins began a series of phone calls to his son Cameron to tip him off to the test results “anticipating Cameron Collins would use it to trade and tip others.”
The test results were made public four days later and Innate stock dropped 92 percent. By then, however, Collins, his son and his son’s future father-in-law had avoided $768,000 in losses.
A grand jury returned an indictment charging the trio with insider trading. The men surrendered to the FBI in New York and were awaiting an arraignment in federal court in Manhattan, where prosecutors planned a noon news conference.
“We will answer the charges filed against Congressman Collins in court and will mount a vigorous defense to clear his good name,” a statement from his attorneys said. “We are confident he will be completely vindicated and exonerated.”
Collins, his son Cameron, and Stephen Zarsky pleaded not guilty Wednesday afternoon. The judge set bail at $500,000 each.
The congressman, who left court without comment, was ordered to surrender his diplomatic passport. All three men were ordered to surrender firearms to local authorities.