Ex-US congressman sentenced to 22 months for insider trading


(Reuters) – Former U.S. Congressman Stephen Buyer was sentenced to 22 months in prison on Tuesday for trading on inside information he learned in 2018 as a consultant to T-Mobile US Inc ahead of its $23 billion merger with Sprint.

U.S. District Judge Richard Berman in New York sentenced Buyer, who was found guilty on four counts of securities fraud at a trial in March. Buyer was a Republican from Indiana in the U.S. House of Representatives between 1993 and 2011 before working as a corporate consultant.

Prosecutors said at trial that Buyer bought Sprint stock after learning from a T-Mobile executive that the telecommunications companies were in merger talks in 2018 and made illegal trades again the following year.

According to prosecutors, Buyer made more than $100,000 from the Sprint trades and more than $200,000 from buying stock in Navigant Consulting Inc. before it was acquired by Guidehouse in 2019.

Buyer took the stand at trial and denied trading on inside information. He has said he plans to file an appeal.

Prosecutors sought three years in prison for Buyer in court filings, saying that he had abused his clients’ trust and lied on the stand.

Buyer asked to be sentenced to home confinement, citing his service in Congress and the U.S. military.

The case is U.S. v. Buyer, No. 22-00397, U.S. District Court, Southern District of New York.

(Reporting by Jody Godoy in New York, editing by Deepa Babington)

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