A federal jury on Wednesday, April 25, acquitted a former trader for the Swiss bank UBS of charges related to market manipulation, dealing a blow to a Justice Department (DOJ) effort to crack down on a Wall Street practice known as “spoofing”—placing and quickly canceling orders to give a false impression of supply or demand—reported Bloomberg.
Andre Flotron, 54, was cleared by a federal jury in New Haven, Connecticut, of a single count of conspiracy to engage in commodities fraud. It was the first acquittal in a spoofing-related case since the US outlawed the practice in 2010. He could have faced as long as 25 years in prison if convicted.
“We’re extremely pleased with the jury’s verdict,” Flotron’s defense attorney Marc Mukasey said. “Justice has been done.”
Prosecutors said Flotron led a conspiracy at UBS that lasted for about five years starting in May 2009. Economic turmoil at the time led to historic rallies in the prices of precious metals, especially gold. Two former UBS traders, who were cooperating with the government in exchange for non-prosecution agreements, testified that spoofing was a common practice.
Full Content: Bloomberg