SEC Charges Canadian Accountant with Insider Trading

June 12, 2018/US SEC

The Securities and Exchange Commission today charged a Vancouver-based Chartered Professional Accountant with illegally trading in the securities of a Canadian oil and gas company, using non-public information he obtained while working for a member of the company’s board of directors.

The SEC’s complaint alleges that in May 2016, while working as an accountant and personal assistant for a director of InterOil Corporation, Kurt J. Bordian received e-mail messages indicating that the company was entering into a merger agreement in which its stock would be acquired at a significant premium. The complaint alleges that, shortly before the merger announcement, Bordian purchased out-of-the-money InterOil call options with near-term expiration dates, which meant that Bordian stood to profit only if InterOil’s stock price rose significantly shortly after he acquired the options. As alleged in the complaint, following the merger announcement, InterOil’s stock price increased over 37% percent, and Bordian sold the InterOil options contracts, making illicit profits of $220,500.

The SEC’s complaint, filed in the U.S. District Court for the District of New Jersey, charges Bordian with violating Section 10(b) of the Securities Exchange Act of 1934, and Rule 10b-5 thereunder. Without admitting or denying the allegations in the SEC’s complaint, Bordian consented to the entry of a final judgment that permanently enjoins him from future violations, prohibits him from acting as an officer or director of a public company, and orders him to pay disgorgement of $220,500, prejudgment interest of $14,358, and a civil penalty of $220,500. Bordian also consented to a Commission order suspending him from appearing or practicing before the Commission as an accountant.

The SEC’s investigation was conducted by Brian T. Fitzsimons and supervised by Brian O. Quinn. The SEC appreciates the assistance of the British Columbia Securities Commission and the Financial Industry Regulatory Authority.

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