The Securities and Exchange Commission sued a Long Island financial adviser in federal court on Friday for allegedly trading on inside information.
The SEC alleges that Tibor Klein, 39, of Melville, learned in 2010 that pharmaceutical giant Pfizer, Inc. planned to acquire King Pharmaceuticals, Inc., and then bought securities for himself and more than 40 clients. The SEC alleges that he also passed the information to his friend Michael Shechtman, 39, a stockbroker who lives in Lake Worth, Fla. The SEC filed the case in Florida.
While Klein netted $8,824 in profits from the transaction, his clients made $319,550 and Shechtman and his wife made $109,041, the complaint said.
Klein, who is the owner and president of Valley Stream-based Klein Financial Services, declined to comment and referred questions to his Florida attorney who did not immediately return a call and email for comment.
Klein learned that Pfizer was planning to buy King in August 2010 during a meal with his friend and client, lawyer Robert Schulman, who was working on the merger, the complaint said. Schulman, who was drunk on wine, blurted out "It would be nice to be King for a day," the complaint said.
Klein purchased more than 60,000 shares of King Pharmaceuticals for himself and his clients three days later and continued to invest in the company, according to the complaint. Shechtman also bought shares and options in the company following a flurry of calls with Klein, the complaint said. The two sold most of the shares and options on Oct. 12; when the acquisition was announced the shares closed up 39 percent. The remaining investments were liquidated three days later.
Shechtman admitted Klein gave him the idea to invest in King, the complaint said.