JPMorgan Advisor Steps Down to Appeal Insider Trading Fine

A top advisor at JPMorgan Chase has stepped down to appeal a £450,000 ($720,000) fine from the UK’s Financial Services Authority (FSA) for disclosing inside information about a potential offer for Heritage Oil, as well as news of an oil find.

In the FSA’s opinion, Ian Hannam disclosed inside information in two emails sent in September and October 2008 to a prospective client. The emails contained inside information relating to Heritage Oil, an existing J P Morgan client for which Hannam was the lead adviser.

The recipient of the e-mail was a representative of an organization that had interests in the Kurdistan region of Iraq, where Heritage had exploration projects.

Hannam has referred the matter to the Upper Tribunal (the Tribunal) where he and the FSA will each present their case. The Tribunal will then determine the appropriate action for the FSA to take. The Tribunal may uphold, vary or cancel the FSA’s decision.

“I strongly believe, and have been advised by my legal counsel, that the FSA’s conclusions are wrong and I look forward to challenging them,” London-based Hannam said in a statement. “The FSA has not challenged my fit and proper status and has accepted that I acted with honesty and integrity.”

(Sources: Reuters, FSA)

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