Watchdog charges ex-Morrison treasurer - UK
Fin24 - Sep 30th 2014, 10:32
London - The former treasurer and head of tax at Wm Morrison Supermarkets, the country's No. 4 grocer, has been charged with insider dealing, Britain's Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) said on Monday.
The financial watchdog said Paul Coyle was charged with two offences related to trading in shares of online grocer Ocado between February and May 2013.
Morrison announced talks with Ocado regarding a possible partnership in March 2013, sending shares in Ocado sharply higher. A deal between the two companies was agreed in May 2013.
Coyle was originally arrested in December 2013 when still a Morrisons employee.
He will now face a hearing in front of magistrates and, depending on his plea, a possible criminal trial. Individuals found guilty of insider trading can be sentenced to up to seven years in prison.
Calls by Reuters to Coyle's lawyer were not answered.
The FCA and its predecessor the Financial Services Authority have secured 24 convictions in relation to insider dealing.
"The FCA's insider dealing investigation did not concern Wm Morrison Supermarkets Plc or any other Morrisons' employee," the grocer said in a statement.
The company said it was satisfied with its governance and procedures concerning the handling of market sensitive data in this case. "These accusations, if proven, would be the result of an individual acting alone," it added. From Fin24.com
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