Federal and International, Law and Order

Evanston Woman Charged With Insider Trading

Evanston woman charged, statue of justice, justice, The Old Bailey, Ronnie McDonald
“Statue of Justice – The Old Bailey” by Ronnie Macdonald is licensed under CC BY 2.0 CC BY 2.0

Chicago, IL-(ENEWSPF)- An Evanston woman used insider information obtained from her husband to purchase shares of a company ahead of its acquisition by her husband’s employer, according to a federal criminal charge filed today by the U.S. Attorney’s Office in Chicago.

In August and September 2019, DENISE GREVAS made $286,960 in illegal profits from the purchase and sale of securities in a Washington state-based pharmaceutical company that was a target for acquisition and later acquired by an overseas-based pharmaceutical company that had an office in Deerfield, Ill., and employed Grevas’s husband, according to a criminal information filed in U.S. District Court in Chicago.  Grevas used material, non-public information about the expected acquisition to purchase shares in the Washington company ahead of a public announcement of the acquisition on Sept. 16, 2019, the charge alleges.  After the announcement, the Washington company’s stock price increased and Grevas sold her shares for the profit, the charge alleges.

The information charges Grevas, 60, with one count of securities fraud.  The charge, which was filed by the Securities and Commodities Fraud Section of the U.S. Attorney’s Office in Chicago, is punishable by up to 20 years in federal prison.  An arraignment in federal court in Chicago has not yet been scheduled.

The charge was announced by John R. Lausch, Jr., United States Attorney for the Northern District of Illinois; and Emmerson Buie, Jr., Special Agent-in-Charge of the Chicago Field Office of the FBI.  The U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission, which filed a civil enforcement action against Grevas, provided valuable assistance.  Assistant U.S. Attorneys Jared Hasten and Jason Yonan represent the government in the criminal case.

The public is reminded that an information is not evidence of guilt.  The defendant is presumed innocent and entitled to a fair trial at which the government has the burden of proving guilt beyond a reasonable doubt. 

What Is a Criminal Information?

The following from MoloLamken LLP:

In a federal white collar criminal case, an “indictment,” an “information,” and a “complaint” all serve the same function – they initiate a criminal case and inform the defendant of the charges against him.  They also ensure that a prosecutor has sufficient evidence to establish probable cause that a crime has been committed.

The Fifth Amendment to the U.S. Constitution requires that, in the federal system, a felony prosecution begin with an indictment.  To obtain an indictment, a prosecutor must present proposed char­ges to a grand jury – a body of jurors that investigates crimes and decides whether charges should be filed.  If, after considering the evidence, the grand jury decides there is sufficient cause for the prosecution to proceed, it will issue an indictment that describes the criminal charges against a person and the factual basis for those charges.

Like an indictment, an information is a formal charging document that describes the criminal charges against a person and the factual basis for those charges.  Unlike an indictment, however, an information does not require a grand jury’s vote.  Instead, the information is presented to a judicial officer, usually a magistrate judge, who examines the information and decides whether there is probable cause that a crime occurred. 

This is a release from the United States Department of Justice.