Sun, 17 Oct 2021

OppenheimerFunds staffer arrested for $8 million fraud

Robert Besser
27 Sep 2021, 14:17 GMT+10

NEW YORK CITY, New York: Former OppenheimerFunds analyst Sergei Polevikov, 48, of Port Washington, New York, who was arrested late Wednesday on securities, wire, and investment company fraud charges, was freed Thursday on $1.5 million bail.

He was alleged to have used firm secrets to deposit over $8 million in illegal profits.

His lawyer, Brooke Cucinella, said her client was "surprised by the charges, and intends to defend against them vigorously," as reported by The Associated Press.

U.S. Attorney Audrey Strauss said Polevikov misappropriated secrets about trades his employer was going to make on behalf of its investment company clients so that he could make personal trades ahead of large institutional trades, reaping over $8.5 million in gains.

The profits earned by Polevikov capitalized on small up or down movements in the value of securities, influenced briefly by large trades carried out by his company, the complaint said.

The Securities and Exchange Commission also brought civil claims against Polevikov in Manhattan, saying he carried out a multi-year "front-running scheme by trading securities in his wife's account."

In court papers, it said Polevikov worked at the firm until May 2019, using his strategy on over 3,000 occasions to profit on confidential information to execute same-day trades in the same securities his company was trading in on behalf of clients.

OppenheimerFunds was acquired by Invesco in May 2019.

(File photo).

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