The U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) charged Gene Levoff, Apple’s former vice president of corporate law with insider trading in February 2019, according to CNBC. Insider trading is the illegal practice of trading on the stock exchange to one’s own advantage through having access to confidential information.
However, Levoff says the charges are unconstitutional because Levoff’s actions are not expressly prohibited by any one criminal law, reports Bloomberg.
Before his termination in September, Levoff was “responsible for Apple’s compliance with securities laws.” In a lawsuit, the SEC says that, on more than one occasion, he disobeyed the company’s “blackout” period for stock transactions, selling or buying stock worth tens of millions of dollars, according to the SEC.
“Levoff also had a previous history of insider trading, having traded on Apple’s material nonpublic information at least three additional times in 2011 and 2012. For the trading in 2015 and 2016, Levoff profited and avoided losses of approximately $382,000,” the SEC complaint says. It adds that the attorney’s position at Apple granted him insider access to not-yet-public earnings results and briefings on iPhone sales.
Levoff resides in San Carlos, California. From 2008 to 2013, he was director of Corporate Law at Apple. He also served on Apple’s Disclosure Committee from September 2008 to July 2018
According to the SEC complaint, Levoff was responsible for Apple’s compliance with securities laws, including providing legal advice in connection with the tech giant’s SEC filings and financial reporting, and for managing Apple’s corporate subsidiary structure.
He also served as a corporate officer of every major Apple subsidiary. Ironically, Levoff was responsible for ensuring compliance with the company’s insider trading policies. He’s currently out on bail.