Rep. Chris Collins‘ son and his son’s fiancee bought shares of an Australian biotech company just days before dumping the shares after the New York Republican allegedly tipped his son off about a failed clinical drug trial in a phone call from the White House lawn, the Securities and Exchange Commission said in a complaint.
Collins’ son, Cameron Collins, and the son’s accountant fiancee, Lauren Zarsky, had purchased the stock of Innate Immunotherapeutics in June 2017 because they believed — mistakenly, it turned out — that the trial of the company’s multiple sclerosis treatment would yield positive results, the SEC said in its complaint.
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A multimillion-dollar lawsuit has been quietly making its way through the New York State court system over the last three years, pitting a private equity manager named David Storper against his former boss: Secretary of Commerce Wilbur Ross. The pair worked side by side for more than a decade, eventually at the firm, WL Ross & Co.—where, Storper later alleged, Ross stole his interests in a private equity fund, transferred them to himself, then tried to cover it up with bogus paperwork. Two weeks ago, just before the start of a trial with $4 million on the line, Ross and Storper agreed to a confidential settlement, whose existence has never been reported and whose terms remain secret.
It is difficult to imagine the possibility that a man like Ross, who Forbes estimates is worth some $700 million, might steal a few million from one of his business partners. Unless you have heard enough stories about Ross. Two former WL Ross colleagues remember the commerce secretary taking handfuls of Sweet’N Low packets from a nearby restaurant, so he didn’t have to go out and buy some for himself.
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