Former Senior Executive of Qualcomm Pleads Guilty to Insider Trading and Money Laundering
Jing Wang, 51, the former Executive Vice President and President of Global Business Operations for Qualcomm Inc., today pleaded guilty to insider trading in shares of Qualcomm and Atheros Communications Inc. Wang also pleaded guilty to laundering the proceeds of his insider trading using an offshore shell company.
Assistant Attorney General Leslie R. Caldwell of the Justice Department’s Criminal Division and U.S. Attorney L aura E. Duffy of the Southern District of California made the announcement. Wang pleaded guilty today in federal court in San Diego before U.S. District Judge William Q. Hayes .
“Not satisfied with his lucrative executive position at Qualcomm, Jing Wang traded on insider information about the company’s acquisitions and earnings to gain an illegal advantage in the financial market,” said Assistant Attorney General Caldwell. “Wang then laundered close to $250,000 in insider trading profits, and created a cover-up story to hide his crimes. We will continue to prosecute those who believe they can make easy money by breaking the laws that ensure a level playing field in the financial marketplace.”
“Jing Wang blatantly and repeatedly abused the trust placed in him by Qualcomm and the company’s shareholders,” said United States Attorney Duffy. “To make matters worse, he then misused the financial system to conceal his insider trading profits and enlisted his brother and stock broker to obstruct several investigations. Wang’s obstructive acts, though ultimately unsuccessful, were serious affronts to the rule of law. We will continue to use our excellent partnerships with the Criminal Division, the FBI, IRS-CI and our other law enforcement partners to not only prosecute securities fraud, but also disrupt attempts like Wang’s to obscure criminal conduct from the eyes of government investigators.”
According to court documents, Wang committed insider trading on three separate occasions over a ten-month period in 2010 and 2011. In early 2010, Wang purchased approximately $277,739 of Qualcomm stock prior to the company’s unexpected announcement of a dividend increase and stock repurchase program. In December 2010, while in Hong Kong, Wang purchased Atheros stock hours after Qualcomm’s Board of Directors made a non-public offer to purchase Atheros. Just a few weeks later, in January 2011, Wang directed his stock broker, Gary Yin, to sell the Atheros stock in a brokerage account held in the name of an offshore entity, Unicorn Global Enterprises, and used the proceeds to purchase Qualcomm stock, one day before Qualcomm announced record earnings results. In total, Wang illegally gained approximately a quarter of a million dollars from these three illegal transactions.
Wang also pleaded guilty to money laundering resulting from transferring the illegal proceeds in the Unicorn account – over $525,000 – to another nominee brokerage account in the British Virgin Islands for Clearview Resources Ltd. Wang also admitted in his plea agreement to obstructing justice by conspiring with his brother, Bing Wang, and Yin to fabricate evidence and concoct a false cover story that Bing Wang conducted the illegal stock trades. Sentencing is scheduled for Nov. 17, 2014.
Wang was originally indicted in September 2013. Bing Wang, who is currently believed to reside in China, remains charged and is wanted on an international arrest warrant. Gary Yin pleaded guilty to conspiring with Jing Wang and Bing Wang to obstruct justice and launder money, and is currently scheduled to be sentenced on Sept. 15, 2014.
The department appreciates the substantial assistance it received from the Securities and Exchange Commission’s Los Angeles Regional Office.
This case was investigated by the FBI’s San Diego Field Office and the Internal Revenue Service-Criminal Investigation’s San Diego Field Division. The case is being prosecuted by Trial Attorney James P. McDonald of the Criminal Division’s Fraud Section and Assistant U.S. Attorney Eric J. Beste of the Southern District of California.