Dr. Yves Benhamou was involved in the clinical trial of a new dosage of a hepatitis treatment called Albuferon, and he (allegedly) told Chip Skowron that two people had developed cancer and one of them died in the trial.
For exchanging this confidential information, Benhamou pleaded guilty to insider trading and Skowron was arrested and surrendered to the FBI on Wednesday.
He’s pleading not guilty, and he’s currently out on a $6 million bail.
To build their case against Skowron, the government is trying to establish that Skowron knew that it was wrong to receive the Albuferon death tip from Benhamou.
So they’re using these two things as evidence:
- Minutes after receiving the tip about the death, Skowron emailed Benhamou: “Let’s keep this very confidential. Thanks shaun [sic] for calling. I will get back to you.”
- In order to conceal their insider trading scheme, Chip Skowron told Dr. Yves Benhamou to say that they had only ever spoken about “a basket of drugs.”
And there’s a third thing that makes Skowron look especially bad hearted. After Benhamou tipped him, Skowon tried to pay Benhamou off. He offered Benhamou a bag containing “two stacks of United States currency wrapped in bands,” according to the complaint against him.
But Benhamou couldn’t bring himself to accept a payment for tipping a portfolio manager off about a death in the Albuferon trial.