Insider trader Oliver Curtis will go to Silverwater prison after he was sentenced to two years in jail on Friday morning.
Justice Lucy McCallum of the NSW Supreme Court sentenced the 30-year-old to two years in jail, with a minimum of 12 months.
Justice McCallum said Curtis has declined several opportunities to cooperate with ASIC and he only forfeited the $1.4 million in the period between the verdict and the sentence.
Curtis was found guilty of insider trading conspiracy after pleading not guilty to the charge. He faced a maximum of five years in jail.
Curtis will also be banned from managing a company or acting as a company director for five years from the day he is released from prison.
On Friday morning, Curtis’ wife Roxy Jacenko, his parents Nick and Angela Curtis, family and friends, reporters, a sketch artist and members of the public crowded the St James’ Road courtroom where the sentence was handed down.
The Crown prosecutor had argued Curtis should be jailed for at least 24 months because he did not show remorse for his crime and he did not cooperate with ASIC during the investigation.
As part of the defence submission, Curtis’ wife Roxy Jacenko had argued he should not go to jail because as the face of her PR business she needs to be available 24 hours, 7 days a week and Curtis is the primary carer of their young family. Her current nanny is due to go back to full-time studying and she could not have a live-in nanny because she lives in a three bedroom apartment, she said.
Curtis’ former best friend and co-conspirator John Hartman was sentenced to three years in jail for his own insider trading and that committed with the help of Curtis. Mr Hartman was released after 15 months in 2012 and is now working for Andrew Forrest’s Minderoo Group in Perth as head of agribusiness.
In an oped in The Australian Financial Review, ASIC chairman Greg Medcraft said the corporate regulator will detect, investigate and where possible prosecute insider trading.
“Not so long ago it was a truism to say “insider cases never get up”.
“I’m not sure that this was ever the case, but it was a widely held view. It certainly could not be argued now, and the market has been put on notice,” Mr Medcraft wrote.
“This is not a victimless crime. Those on the other side of the trade – those who were not “in the know”, certainly suffered. They did not make the $1,433,727.85 that Curtis did, and were denied a fair and equal chance to make a profit from their trading,” he wrote.