Securities- Insider Trading

The ex-employee of a Silicon Valley law firm was sentenced to two years in prison after being convicted of illegal insider trading last week. Forty-two-year-old Dimitry Braverman was found guilty of making highly profitable investment trades by using insider information about mergers that his law firm, Wilson Sonsini Goodrich & Rosati, was working on.

Braverman is a Ukrainian immigrant who resides in San Mateo, California. He apologized in court for the criminal behavior he committed while employed at Wilson Sonsini Goodrich & Rosati in its technology department. According to the man's lawyer, Braverman has been remorseful since the beginning.

In Spite of Apology Judge Decided on Tough Sentencing

Braverman pleaded guilty to securities fraud last November in an attempt to garner a home confinement sentence rather than prison. However, during his sentencing hearing last week the U.S. District Judge presiding over his case said that Braverman's criminal activity was so prolonged that a more severe punishment was required.

The judge said, "It is important when an insider trader gets caught -- and a repeated insider trader as here -- that a substantial sentence is imposed."

Not the First Sentencing of a Wilson Sonsini Goodrich & Rosati Employee

This is the second time a Wilson Sonsini Goodrich & Rosati employee has been found guilty of insider trading in the last three years. An ex-associate of the firm, Matthew Kluger, was sentenced to 12 years in prison for insider trading offenses in 2012.

The firm employs 670 lawyers and is based out of Palo Alto. It works with some of the biggest tech companies in the world, and its client list includes names like Google and Apple.

In Braverman's securities fraud case, he was a computer systems engineer working at the law firm who had access to the company's confidential databases. That gave him special access to secret information about upcoming mergers and acquisitions. Prosecutors say that the man's insider trading activity garnered him $304,910 in illegal profits from 2010 through 2013.

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