IT consultant charged with insider trading

A Sydney-based IT consultant faces 115 charges after he allegedly gained unauthorised access to the network of a Melbourne-based financial publisher.

The Australia Securities and Investments Commission (ASIC) alleges that Steven Oakes purchased shares based on information contained in, at the time, unpublished stock recommendation reports produced by the publisher. ASIC did not reveal the name of the publisher.

ASIC alleges that Oakes used the information on 70 occasions, buying shares in 52 ASX-listed companies before the recommendations were published. Oakes then sold the relevant stocks after the recommendation reports were published, ASIC claims.

Oakes is also accused of attempting to hide evidence of his actions from ASIC through the “the concealment, destruction, mutilation or alteration of books”.

Oakes has been charged with 43 counts of unauthorised access to data held in a computer with the intention to commit a serious offence; 70 insider trading offences; and two offences related to the concealment, destruction, mutilation or alteration of books required by ASIC.

Oakes has not yet entered a plea in relation to the charges.

The matter is due to be mentioned in the Melbourne Magistrates’ Court on 25 June.

Copyright © 2018 IDG Communications, Inc.

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