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Stock trader charged with fraud in $1-billion bet on Apple shares

December 04, 2012|By Andrew Tangel
  • Apple reported disappointing quarterly earnings in October, sending its stock price lower and causing a stock trader's alleged $1-billion bet on Apple stock to backfire. Above, a scene from the launch of Apple's iPad mini at a Tokyo store Nov. 30.
Apple reported disappointing quarterly earnings in October, sending… (Kiyoshi Ota / Bloomberg )

NEW YORK -- Federal prosecutors charged a former stock trader at Rochdale Securities of orchestrating an alleged scheme involving a $1-billion bet on Apple stock as the tech giant released earnings results in October.

David Miller, a former trader at the Connecticut firm, is accused of costing Rochdale $5 million in losses, after it was stuck holding 1.6 million Apple shares.

The unauthorized bet backfired when Apple reported disappointing quarterly earnings, sending its stock price lower.

Miller allegedly contended he was executing a customer's order, but the customer sought only 1,625 Apple shares.

“As is so often seen in these types of cases, the alleged criminal conduct of Miller was for personal gain at the expense and detriment of others,” FBI Special Agent Kimberly Mertz said in a statement. “Manipulating and orchestrating stock transactions in such a manner is a very serious criminal offense and its impact can be both devastating and lasting."

Miller, 40, of New York, is charged with wire fraud, which carries a maximum sentence of 20 years in prison.

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