zerohedge.com / by Tyler Durden / Sep 21, 2016 5:07 PM
As reported earlier today, in a stunning crackdown on one of the hedge fund industry’s icons, the SEC accused Omega Advisors’ Leon Cooperman of insider trading in shares of Atlas Pipeline. As expected, Cooperman disagrees, and in a 5 page letter to investors, he explains why “we are highly disappointed with the Commission’s decision to file charges, and we strongly disagree with the Commission that either the firm or I have engaged in any unlawful conduct.”
We have done nothing improper and categorically deny the Commission’s allegations. As I wrote last year when we first received the subpoenas, I have throughout my fifty-year career in the securities business firmly believed in detailed, fundamental research. As I explained then, that approach has long contemplated direct, face-to-face interactions with company management. Such exchanges of information with company management are appropriate, well-established in the industry, and even necessary. As a Wall Street Journal op-ed put it just last year, “information is not a crime.” Although we don’t think it would be productive to state here our views on what we believe to be a seriously misguided effort by the authorities in these matters, we would refer anyone who is interested to Three Felonies a Day: How the Feds Target the Innocent by Harvey A. Silverglate and Licensed to Lie: Exposing Corruption in the Department of Justice by Sidney Powell, both of which provide fascinating insights into the machinations of our country’s criminal justice system.
This is how Cooperman justifies his internal communications with management: