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Ian Roffman Discusses SCOTUS Ruling in Salman v. United States in Compliance Week

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12.13.2016

Ian Roffman, chair of Nutter’s Litigation Department and a partner in the firm’s Securities Enforcement and Litigation practice group, was quoted extensively on the U.S. Supreme Court’s recent decision on insider trading in Salman v. United States in Compliance Week on December 13. In the article, “SCOTUS ruling a boon for prosecutors, but questions linger,” Ian, former Senior Trial Counsel in the SEC’s Boston office, notes that the decision is a game changer in many ways. “The Newman decision, at least upon first read, significantly narrowed the scope of claims the government could bring for insider trading. The Salman decision sends us back to the world pre-Newman, but it also makes it clear that there is going to have to be a very fact-intensive analysis of the relationship between tippers and tippees in any insider-trading investigation,” he said.

According to Ian, government investigations are going to be very invasive. “The government is going to feel as though they need to understand every nook and cranny of the relationship between two people who might potentially be tippers and tippees with each other. When you are dealing now with a tipper and tippee relationship, post-Salman, the invasive piece of this investigation is going to be what the relationship between those two people is, and it is not going to be limited to their professional relationship. It is going to include their personal relationships and their family’s personal relationships. The government is going to look under every rock to see if there is some kind of relationship where the tipper could somehow feel like he or she is getting an intangible benefit from the tippee,” he said. Ian also points out that the court, however, left open what standards could, or should, be used to evaluate a relationship. “It very explicitly left that question open for another day,” he said.

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