A former analyst with the New York City office credit rating agency Standard and Poor’s has been convicted on securities fraud charges for passing along inside information about a pending merger announcement, the U.S. Attorney’s Office for Southern District of New York announced Friday.
Sebastian Pinto-Thomaz, 32, was convicted of two counts of securities fraud and two counts of conspiracy.
According to U.S. authorities, Pinto-Thomaz received inside information about Sherwin-Williams Co.’s planned acquisition of Valspar Corp. in 2016, as part of his work on the transaction for S&P.
He purportedly passed along this information to a couple of friends, who traded ahead of the deal’s public announcement, generating about US$300,000 in illegal trading profits.
Pinto-Thomaz, who was convicted following a seven-day jury trial, is slated to be sentenced on July 29. The two men who traded on his tips pled guilty and are awaiting sentencing as well.
“Sebastian Pinto-Thomaz stole confidential information from his employer and passed it to two men he had known for years – and he did it for his own personal benefit. While the defendant attempted to blame his mother for this conduct at trial, as a unanimous jury found, it was Pinto-Thomaz who committed insider trading,” said Geoffrey Berman, U.S. attorney, in a statement.