U.S. seeks up to 6-1/2 years in prison for SAC's Steinberg

Mon May 12, 2014 11:02am EDT
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By Nate Raymond

NEW YORK (Reuters) - U.S. prosecutors are urging a federal judge impose a sentence of up to 6-1/2 years in prison for Michael Steinberg, a portfolio manager at Steven A. Cohen's SAC Capital Advisors convicted last year on insider trading charges.

In a filing late on Friday in New York federal court, prosecutors argued Steinberg should be sentenced up to a year more than what the court's probation office had called appropriate, based on trading the government said Cohen conducted at his employee's recommendation.

"The fact the government did not allege that Cohen was a coconspirator at trial, and argued that Cohen's trading was irrelevant to the crimes charged in the indictment, is of no moment here," the government said in the filing.

The government said U.S. District Judge Richard Sullivan should sentence Steinberg to 5-1/4 to 6-1/2 years in prison and order him to forfeit $365,142.

Steinberg's lawyers earlier this month requested a sentence of two years in prison. Barry Berke, a lawyer for Steinberg, declined to comment on Monday on the prosecutor's sentencing recommendations filing.

Steinberg, who is scheduled to be sentenced Friday, was found guilty in December on five counts of conspiracy and securities fraud.

Prosecutors accused Steinberg, 42, of trading on confidential information about Dell Inc 4331.HK and Nvidia Corp (NVDA.O: Quote) passed to him by an SAC analyst who swapped illegal tips with friends at other firms.

He is one of eight current or former employees of SAC Capital to be convicted for insider trading. SAC Capital itself also pleaded guilty to fraud charges and has agreed to pay $1.8 billion in criminal and civil settlements.   Continued...

Michael Steinberg arrives at the Manhattan Federal Courthouse in New York, November 19, 2013. REUTERS/Brendan McDermid