George Soros’ insider trading conviction to be reviewed

16 September 2010

The European Court of Human Rights is to examine George Soros’ conviction for insider trading following a complaint by the billionaire investor.

Mr Soros was convicted of insider dealing by a court in France in 2002 and fined a total of €2.2 million in relation to his actions during the takeover of French bank Société Générale (SG) in 1988.

According to the court, the investor was invited to purchase shares in the financial services provider as part of an acquisition.

However, Mr Soros is believed to have rejected the offer before his own company bought up shares in four recently privatised firms including SG.

He then sold the shares and made a profit of almost $2.3 million in the process.

In the complaint, Mr Soros claimed he was unclear he was doing anything wrong at the time due to the lack of clarity surrounding the legislation.

Ron Soffer, an attorney working on behalf of the investor, was quoted by Bloomberg as saying: “We hope that the court will issue a final ruling in the same spirit and are certain that the conviction will be overturned as a result.”

The investigation into the case began in 1990 and led to Mr Soros receiving the €2.2 million fine - a figure later reduced to €940,507 following judgement made in 2007.

By Jim Ottewill

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