Jing Wang, the former president of global business operations for Qualcomm Inc., was sentenced Friday to 18 months in prison and fined $500,000 for his role in a three-year insider trading scheme and cover up.
Wang, 52, pleaded guilty in July 2014 to insider trading, money laundering, and obstruction of justice.
He was sentenced Friday by federal judge William Q. Hayes in San Diego, California.
“Jing Wang was a powerful insider at one of the world’s top corporations — but he threw it all away to make a few hundred thousand dollars,” U.S. Attorney Laura Duffy said in a statement.
Assistant Attorney General Leslie Caldwell said Wang used his stock broker and his brother to cover up the insider trading and money laundering.
Wang made three separate insider trades using a brokerage account in the name of his British Virgin Island (BVI) shell company, Unicorn Global Enterprises. He made about $250,000 from the trades.
In early 2010, before Qualcomm announced a dividend increase and stock repurchase, Wang bought company stock worth $277,000.
In December 2010, while he was at Qualcomm’s board of directors meeting in Hong Kong — and hours after the board approved a non-public offer to acquire seminconductor developer Atheros — Wang bought stock in Atheros.
A few weeks later, he told his stockbroker, Gary Yin, to sell the Atheros stock for $481,000 and buy Qualcomm stock the day before the company announced record earnings.
Wang also pleaded guilty to money laundering for transferring ill-gotten gains from Unicorn’s account to an account held by a new BVI shell company he controlled.
And he admitted obstructing justice by concocting a cover story with his broker and brother, Bing Wang. The cover story blamed the brother, who lives in rural China, for the insider trading and the Unicorn account.
Gary Yin, Wang’s broker, pleaded guilty last year to conspiring to obstruct justice and launder money. He’s scheduled to be sentenced July 17.
Wang’s brother has also been charged and is now wanted on an international arrest warrant.
Richard L. Cassin is the publisher and editor of the FCPA Blog. He can be contacted here.