- The Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) has charged a former Amazon.com finance manager and two family members with insider trading in advance of Amazon earnings announcements between January 2016 and July 2018.
- Laksha Bohra, a senior tax manager, prepared and reviewed calculations used to finalize numbers in Amazon's quarterly and annual SEC-filed earnings. For two and a half years, she shared confidential information about the company's financial performance with her husband, Viky Bohra.
- Viky Bohra and his father, Gotham Bohra, allegedly traded on the information in 11 accounts maintained by family members.
The SEC says Laksha Bohra took the action even though the company reminded employees quarterly that passing along material nonpublic information or recommending the purchase or sale of Amazon securities is prohibited. The family reaped profits of approximately $1.4 million from their trading.
"We allege that the Bohras repeatedly and systematically used Amazon's confidential information for their own gain," said Erin Schneider, director of the SEC's San Francisco Regional Office. "Employees with access to confidential, potentially market-moving corporate information may not use that information to enrich themselves, their friends, or their families."
The SEC's complaint, filed in federal court in Seattle, charges all three Bohras with violating antifraud provisions of federal securities laws. All three Bohras have consented to the entry of final judgments permanently enjoining them from further violations and ordering them to pay total disgorgement of $1,428,094, total prejudgment interest of $118,406, and total penalties of $1,106,399.
In a parallel action, the U.S. Attorney's Office for the Western District of Washington filed criminal charges against Viky Bohra.