A former investment banker at Goldman Sachs has been sentenced to three years in prison for insider trading.
Brijesh Goel, a former Goldman banker who was convicted on insider trading and obstruction of justice charges, has been ordered to serve 36 months in jail. He was also fined US$75,000, and ordered to forfeit US$85,000, by a U.S. district court judge. He will also have to pay restitution to the firm.
According to court filings, Goel gathered inside information about potential merger deals from confidential internal emails and tipped a friend, Akshay Niranjan, who worked at another Wall Street bank. Niranjan then traded on that information using his brother’s brokerage account.
Using inside information about six potential mergers-and-acquisitions deals that involved Goldman, they generated total illegal profits of approximately US$280,000.
Along the insider trading charges, Goel was convicted of obstruction for deleting text messages, and asking Niranjan to delete messages, about the scheme amid investigations by a grand jury and the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission.
“Today’s sentence vindicates the integrity of our financial markets and the investors who play by the rules, and serves as a reminder that crime doesn’t pay,” said Damian Williams, U.S. attorney for the Southern District of New York, in a release.
“If you try to cheat the system by engaging in insider trading, you will be punished, and if you try to cover your tracks while under investigation, you only make matters worse,” he said.