Insider trading is a serious financial crime with the potential for severe consequences upon conviction. The good news is that accusations of insider trading do not guarantee a conviction.
There are several strategies to defend yourself against insider trading charges.
Information was publicly available
If the information you used to inform your trade decision was public information that did not come from a privileged source, you can fight the charge. Be ready to showcase the information you used to make your decision and illustrate how the general public could access that information.
Trades were part of a trading plan
Did you have a pre-established trading plan that included the trades in question? If so, you had to create the plan in advance and specify how and when to buy or sell those securities. The documentation of the trading plan supports your defense.
You traded different securities
Sometimes, an accusation of insider trading results due to trades in a related security, not the one directly in question. If this is your situation you might claim that your trade involved a different security, which disqualifies insider trading accusations.
In 2022, the SEC filed 760 enforcement actions, including insider trading claims. The costs associated with a conviction can lead to financial disaster. Understanding the options available to you for defending against these charges helps you fight for your freedom by documenting the information that contributed to your claim. Keeping comprehensive records of your trades and trading plans helps you justify your decisions should you face accusations of insider trading.