back to article Amazon exec's husband jailed for two years for insider trading. Yes, with Amazon stock

The husband of an Amazon financial executive was sentenced on Thursday to 26 months behind bars for insider trading of the web giant's stock. Viky Bohra, 37, of Bothell, Washington, reaped a profit of $1,428,264 between January 2016 and October 2018 by buying and selling Amazon stock using eleven trading accounts managed by …

  1. MJI Silver badge

    Got too greedy yet.....

    It is still OK to tank a companies shares to make money.

    Well done to the Gamestop investors.

    1. katrinab Silver badge
      Meh

      Re: Got too greedy yet.....

      Gamestop "investors" weren't acting on inside information, or, indeed, on any information at all.

      1. 9Rune5 Silver badge

        Re: Got too greedy yet.....

        I believe MJI's first sentence referred to the shorters and the final sentence congratulated GameStop investors with the success in throwing a monkey wrench in the works.

        1. Dave314159ggggdffsdds Silver badge

          Re: Got too greedy yet.....

          Obviously not.

        2. doublelayer Silver badge

          Re: Got too greedy yet.....

          I doubt it, but it doesn't matter much. The comments about the people investing favorably apply just as well to the unfavorable ones. No insider, not much information, all public information.

        3. MJI Silver badge

          Re: Got too greedy yet.....

          I was refering to the fact that insider trading is illegal, but it is not illegal to short a company to bankruptcy.

          Insider trading gets caught simply due to greed.

          Oh and I am still a little puzzled as to why using information about a company is illegal.

          can someone explain it please?

          1. doublelayer Silver badge

            Re: Got too greedy yet.....

            "it is not illegal to short a company to bankruptcy."

            You don't short a company to bankruptcy. Shorting a company just means you bet their stock goes down. If it does, they aren't going bankrupt--their investors own the stock, not them. If it goes down, they likely have other problems which could cause them to go bankrupt, but it's not your shorting. Also, the action of shorting doesn't decrease the price. You just hope it does. You are much more likely to go bankrupt while shorting than your target is because being wrong is dangerous.

            "Oh and I am still a little puzzled as to why using information about a company is illegal."

            Not enough. Using information about a company which others don't have is illegal. Because by doing that, you're benefiting from a situation which others are not in. Imagine that you own some stock in a company, you know that company's failing, but they haven't told other people yet. If you sell before they announce it, you've made money by selling something worthless to someone who didn't know it. That's why it was made illegal. This is subject to disagreement, but that's the reasoning.

    2. chivo243 Silver badge
      Unhappy

      Re: Got too greedy yet.....

      Like every Million or Billionaire, they most likely didn't get the money through being a philanthropist and or activist. And if they did, that was their angle all along.

  2. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    >who worked as a senior manager in the mega corp's tax avoidance department

    FTFY

  3. a_yank_lurker Silver badge

    Rock Level Stupidity

    I just did my annual insider trading course at work. One point they mentioned is having family members act on your behalf is considered insider trading by you. Also, the information has to available to public for a day before an insider can trade on it. Sounds like a good way to have a very lengthy vacation at Club Fed; all expense paid.

  4. Pascal Monett Silver badge

    Being a high-roller is a lot of fun

    But it's a lot better when the money is legit.

    The guy's an idiot. In barely two years he reaps almost $1.5 million and he thinks nobody is going to notice ?

    And now he's ruined his wife's career.

    I wonder if he'll still have a wife in 2 years and 9 months. If so, it'll be a cold reunion.

    1. Chris G Silver badge

      Re: Being a high-roller is a lot of fun

      The article said she avoided prosecution because of her husband's plea bargain, so she may have been aiding and abetting his actions.

      1. John Brown (no body) Silver badge

        Re: Being a high-roller is a lot of fun

        "The article said she avoided prosecution because of her husband's plea bargain, so she may have been aiding and abetting his actions."

        Clearly she was the source of the information. So either she told him, or she was grossly negligent in her computer security.

        1. edris90

          Re: Being a high-roller is a lot of fun

          Just because you do everything a single person can do, does not mean you get the intended outcome.

          Information has a almost unstopable tendency to leak. The best we can do is hold it back temporarily Somewhat clumsily.

          Charges against the husband are appropiate, but To assume that the wife Let it happen rather than the husband overcame The wife's reasonable efforts to maintain secrecy, Seems to be practicing "guilty till proven innocent" mechanisms.

          You could make these kind of crimes impossible, By requiring companies To publish Intracompany communications ,to the public in real time.

          Without all the secrecy, Is the public is better equipped to vet , Hold accountable, and guide buisnesses to Better symbiosis with the common people.

          1. Roland6 Silver badge

            Re: Being a high-roller is a lot of fun

            but To assume that the wife Let it happen rather than the husband overcame The wife's reasonable efforts to maintain secrecy

            Whilst I agree, there is some unavoidable information leakage, I think getting "copies of Amazon's confidential financial figures from his wife" would indicate the wife wasn't making "reasonable efforts to maintain secrecy".

            1. edris90

              Re: Being a high-roller is a lot of fun

              Any in all secrets will be discovered by anyone sufficiently motivated or even just incidentally.

              Humans cannot guarantee anything. all they can do with all they can do is gamble on an assumption of the future.

    2. sanmigueelbeer Silver badge

      Re: Being a high-roller is a lot of fun

      The guy's an idiot. In barely two years he reaps almost $1.5 million and he thinks nobody is going to notice

      If I remembered correctly, there was another El Reg article about someone who had insider's information from an Amazon staff (wife).

      Like this fellow, he created several dummy accounts to trade shares. That time, all the dummy accounts had one name, namely his. And to make matters worst, all the funds for the dummy accounts went to one bank account, theirs.

      1. The Man Who Fell To Earth Silver badge
        FAIL

        Re: Being a high-roller is a lot of fun

        All financial institutions in the US, including brokerages, require your Social Security number (or EIN number if you are claiming to be a business) and report everything to the IRS. The only way you could attempt to hide these types of shenanigans would be to enlist other people to open brokerage accounts in their own names (and pay taxes on those gains) and give you a cut of the net profits in cash. The bottom line is even if you are completely amoral, the risk/reward usually doesn't work out in your favor and a smart person would conclude there are better legal ways to make money.

    3. idiot taxpayer here again
      Pint

      Re: Being a high-roller is a lot of fun

      @Pascal Monett

      Not like you to have brain fart, but on this occasion? Well, 26 months is not 2yrs and 9 months. Maybe you have mixed up what he got with what the prosecution wanted?

      Nonetheless, I think you need to have a few of these. Cheers.

      1. Pascal Monett Silver badge

        Re: Brain fart

        Indeed, I mixed up what the prosecution asked for with what the guy got :).

        Thanks for the beer, and for the compliment !

  5. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    He's an idiot

    He should have known that only Trump supporting politicians were allowed to get away with that, and he's gone.

    Duh.

    :)

    1. Trigun Bronze badge

      Re: He's an idiot

      Oh come on. You think only trump supporters do this kind of thing? It's a human thing and can infect anyone of any idiology.

      1. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Re: He's an idiot

        You have misread what was written. It wasn't only Trump supporting politicians that does it. It's that they are they only ones that will be allowed to get away with doing it.

        Different AC.

      2. Ken Moorhouse Silver badge

        Re: idiology

        I see what you did there, or was it unintended?

    2. gandalfcn Bronze badge

      Re: He's an idiot

      "Kayleigh McEnany insisting that she never lied during her tenure in the White House because she is “a woman of faith.”

      and there you have it. all you needed to do was wave a bible

  6. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Should have run for Congress

    Reps can insider trade with impunity. Go democracy!!!

  7. DarkwavePunk

    Moronic

    Back in the distant fog of time when dinosaurs roamed the mighty fens of Cambridgeshire, I worked for an online stockbroking company. Had full access to a dedicated X.25 link to the LSE, access to everything on the network, and the ability to see pretty much everything before it was made public. Even 20ish year old me wasn't stupid enough to do that shit. Maybe I could have been a millionaire. Having dealt with the SFO, FSO, FCA and their ilk I'm happy to just be a pauper and not in gaol.

    1. Version 1.0 Silver badge

      Re: Moronic

      Sure, but when you look at all the comments you can see that most people think that all insider traders are caught - LOL, no that's not the case at all, the smart one get away with it, we're only prosequeting the stupid ones.

  8. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    I wish I could steal over a million pounds, get caught, and only have to serve 26 months (probably out in 13) in a club med facility for temporarily-embarassed millionairres.

    1. Snowy
      Facepalm

      I think not

      [QUOTE]

      Viky Bohra, 37, of Bothell, Washington, reaped a profit of $1,428,264 between January 2016 and October 2018 by buying and selling Amazon stock using eleven trading accounts managed by himself and his family.

      Separately, he was also charged by the SEC and told to cough up $2,652,899 in disgorgement, interest, and penalties.[/QUOTE]

      Made $1,428,26 and told to cough up $2,652,899 I think if that is what you want your wishing for the wrong thing.

    2. This post has been deleted by its author

    3. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      The missing figures are the risks of getting caught. Roughly speaking

      gain = (1-P(nabbed)) * haul - P(nabbed)*(Cost(jail)+penalties+lossOfFutureEarnings)

      In this case P(nabbed) was likely ~1, because they made a frontal assault and the evidence was overwhelming.

      With more levels of indirection, say, providing stocking tips to old friends who are brokers, and getting your back scratched somewhere down the road via some else's stock tips, P(nabbed) is much smaller.

    4. Shooter
      Gimp

      Club Fed

      https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Z2-1wcJYrWA

  9. Tempest
    WTF?

    It's a Pity the U.S. SEC Didn't Monitor . . .

    Madoff, who went unexamined for decades.

    Hopefully Madoff is feeling the heat now, given his soul likely resides in Hell.

  10. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Greed

    Is a strange sauce

    1. Ken Moorhouse Silver badge

      Re: Greed. Is a strange sauce

      Which will often ketchup with those that indulge in it.

  11. David Pearce

    Only doing it once

    One thing I notice is that these people caught all repeated the trading many times.

    I wonder how many control their greed and only trade once. Far harder to prove the connection in that case

    1. MJI Silver badge

      Re: Only doing it once

      I think this could be very common. I think the caught people are just getting too greedy.

    2. JoeCool

      Re: Only doing it once

      There's an algorithm for that too - you open an account, make 1 trade which is a big win, for a stock that further investigation shows you are personally related to, then you cash out. ALARM ALARM ALARM.

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