SEC Charges Swiss Resident in Insider Trading Case Involving Bioverativ Acquisition

June 13, 2019/US SEC

The Securities and Exchange Commission today filed an amended complaint naming Swiss resident Roland M. Mathys as a defendant in an insider trading case the SEC brought last year alleging that certain unknown traders made approximately $5 million in profits by making timely purchases of Bioverativ, Inc. call options in advance of the January 22, 2018 announcement that Sanofi S.A. would acquire Bioverativ.

The U.S. Attorney’s Office for the Southern District of New York announced parallel criminal charges against Mathys stemming from the same conduct.

The SEC’s amended complaint alleges that Mathys received material non-public information about Sanofi’s impending acquisition of Bioverativ from a Sanofi insider’s son. According to the amended complaint, Mathys used the information to purchase approximately $169,000 of out-of-the-money Bioverativ call options in the 10 days immediately leading up to the public announcement. The SEC alleges that Mathys’ purchases made up a significant portion of all reported options trades in the series of Bioverativ options he traded, including almost 100 percent of the market in several instances. By allegedly purchasing these options based on material non-public information, Mathys was able to turn his approximately $169,000 investment into profits of approximately $5 million. All or substantially all of these funds have been frozen in the United States or Switzerland.

The amended complaint charges Mathys with violating Section 14(e) of the Securities Exchange Act of 1934 and Rule 14e-3 thereunder. The Commission is seeking a permanent injunction, disgorgement of illegal trading profits plus prejudgment interest, and civil penalties.

The SEC’s investigation was conducted by Michael Hoke and Kimberly Frederick of the Denver Regional Office, and supervised by Jason Burt and Kurt Gottschall. The litigation is being led by Mark Williams and Nicholas Heinke, and supervised by Gregory Kasper. The Commission appreciates the assistance of the United States Attorney’s Office for the Southern District of New York, the U.S. Department of Justice’s Office of International Affairs, the Swiss Financial Market Supervisory Authority (FINMA), and the Swiss Federal Office of Justice.

For additional information, see Litigation Release No. 24035 (January 26, 2018).

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