A former banker accused of leaking deal tips to his dad was convicted of insider trading - again

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A former banker accused of leaking deal tips to his dad was convicted of insider trading - again

Sean Stewart

REUTERS/Brendan McDermid

Former Perella Weinberg investment banker Sean Stewart.

  • Sean Stewart, a former managing director at Perella Weinberg Partners, was found guilty of insider trading on Monday, according to a Bloomberg report.
  • He was accused of tipping off his father about pending mergers. His earlier guilty verdict was overturned in 2018.
  • Prosecutors brought - and ultimately won - the retrial, even without a key piece of tape that had been their smoking gun in 2016.
  • Read more on Markets Insider

The second time isn't a charm for Sean Stewart.

The former managing director of Perella Weinberg Partners was convicted of insider trading for leaking information to his father, on Monday. The trial was the second time Stewart's case has been heard in court, and the second time he's been found guilty.

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The jurors deliberated for a total of 65 minutes over two days before returning the guilty verdict, Bloomberg reported.

In 2016, Stewart was accused and convicted of tipping off his father, Bob Stewart, about five pending healthcare mergers. His dad ended up trading on the information, and he and two associates ultimately pocketed $1.1 million. The younger Stewart ended up serving 13 months in prison for his involvement, even though he didn't reap any of the profits of the trades.

The case was overturned in 2018 when an appeals court ruled that the judge should've let statements Bob made to the FBI be presented to the jury. The defense argued those comments undermined the prosecution's case.

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Still, prosecutors wanted to give it another go, and brought the case back in 2019 without a key piece of evidence that had been their smoking gun in 2016: a tape of Bob saying his son had scolded him for missing a chance to trade on inside information. US District Judge Jed Rakoff barred the evidence, calling the tape "a rambling series of disjointed statements," according to Bloomberg.

The case held up without the tape, as prosecutors relied on phone records, emails, and more than a dozen witnesses to show that Stewart's knowledge of the mergers coincided with details that his father shared with Mark Boccia and Richard Cunniffe, his associates, who both testified.

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Boccia was granted immunity from prosecution, and Cunniffe cooperated with the government. Bob got probation after he plead guilty.

Stewart is free on bail until January 29, when he will be sentenced. In 2016, he was sentenced to three years in prison for the same conviction.

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