A two-timing investment banker has been jailed for two years and eight months for insider dealing.
In a case brought by the Financial Services Authority (FSA), Thomas Ammann, a former approved person and banker at Mizuho International (MI), was jailed after pleading guilty to two counts of insider dealing and two counts of encouraging insider dealing.
In late 2008 and 2009 MI was advising Canon, the multi-national technology company, on its acquisition of Océ, a medium sized Dutch company making photocopiers, scanners, related software and accessories. By virtue of his employment at MI, Ammann had access to inside price sensitive information relating to the takeover.
Rather than dealing in his own name, Ammann encouraged his two girlfriends at the time, Christina Weckwerth and Jessica Mang, to buy shares of Océ prior to the acquisition being announced.
Following the announcement of the acquisition the women sold their shares for a profit, which they then shared with Ammann.
In November, a jury found that both women were not jointly involved with Ammann and his insider trading.
The FSA said Ammann made several hundred thousand pounds as a result of his offending. Confiscation and cost orders will be dealt with at a later date.
His Honour Judge Leonard QC said: "Your actions had significant impact on public confidence in the integrity of the market at a time that the city is held in increasingly low esteem .... Your activities not only cast a cloud over the particular business that employed you but potentially affects the perception of mergers and acquisitions business within the city as a whole.
"An honest shareholder who tries to read the market is offended by someone like you who can put aside skill and research by relying on information you are barred from using."
Tracey McDermott, director of enforcement and financial crime, added: "At the time of his arrest Ammann was an FSA approved person with privileged access to inside information. He sought to exploit that position to make easy money.
"This sort of behaviour by city professionals not only brings the individual into disrepute but also damages the reputation and standing of the financial services industry as a whole. We are determined to stamp this out. Today's sentence should serve as a clear warning of the consequences to anyone who might be tempted to follow Ammann's example."
The FSA makes no criticism of Mizuho Internationa.
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