Another millionaire GOP US Congressional Representative Chris Collins of NY has been exposed as being another example of corruption gone amok.
He has gained infamy within political circles as the first US congressman to endorse the presidency of Donald J. Trump.
As per an August 8, 2018 Marketplace report by Robert Schroeder, “New York Rep. Christopher Collins was arrested on federal charges relating to securities fraud Wednesday (8/8/18), in a case involving an Australian biotech company.”
“A Securities and Exchange Commission case against Collins — the first congressional Republican to endorse President Donald Trump’s bid for the White House — also charges his son Cameron and the father of his son’s girlfriend, Stephen Zarsky.”
“The indictment says that in June 2017, Rep. Collins passed on nonpublic information about Innate Immunotherapeutics’ INNMF, +17.11% drug-trial results to his son. Collins was a board member of the company. The case says that Cameron Collins sold nearly 1.4 million shares based on nonpublic information and that the congressman and his son spoke by phone at least nine times.”
“Lawyers for Collins said in a statement that the government “does not allege that Congressman Collins trade a single share of Innate Therapeutics stock.”
“We are confident he will be completely vindicated and exonerated,” said lawyers Jonathan Barr and Jonathan New.”
Here’s the rest of the story…
On July 8, 2018, Jennifer Rubin of the Washington Post penned the following op-ed piece, “Chris Collins hands Democrats another scandal”
Federal prosecutors charged Rep. Chris Collins (R-N.Y.), one of President Trump’s earliest congressional supporters, with insider trading on Wednesday, alleging the congressman schemed with his son to avoid significant losses in a biotechnology investment.
Collins’s son, Cameron Collins, and Stephen Zarsky, the father of Cameron Collins’s fiancee, were also charged.
The indictment, secured by the U.S. attorney in Manhattan, is related to Collins’s relationship with Innate Immunotherapeutics, an Australian biotech company that was developing a treatment for multiple sclerosis. Collins was the company’s largest shareholder and on its board of directors, giving him access to confidential corporate information.
“Speaker Paul D. Ryan (R-Wis.) issued a terse statement directing the House Ethics Committee to investigate. In fact, the committee had already been doing that, without disciplining Collins:”
“Before Wednesday’s indictment, Collins was already under scrutiny for his role in promoting Innate Immunotherapeutics, which had been developing a new therapy for multiple sclerosis before a high-stakes clinical trial failed last year, essentially putting the company out of business. In October, the Office of Congressional Ethics found “substantial reason to believe” that Collins violated federal law and House rules by meeting with federal officials in his congressional capacity to seemingly benefit the firm and also that he shared private information about the firm to solicit investors.”
“Among those from whom Collins allegedly solicited investments were family members, his congressional staff and House colleagues — including former congressman Tom Price, who later served as Department of Health and Human Services secretary. The House Ethics Committee is reviewing the Office of Congressional Ethics report but has not taken action against Collins.”
“The issue is broader than just whether Collins’s fellow congressmen are involved. Along with the Paul Manafort trial, which has become a tutorial on insider corruption, this is another sign of the GOP’s lack of ethical seriousness and its unwillingness to follow the rules it uses to bash Democrats, as well as a sign of Ryan’s general lack of leadership. Why hasn’t anything been done since last October?”
“In the short run, the Collins matter isn’t likely to affect November’s midterm elections. His upstate New York district is strongly Republican (though, so was Ohio’s 12th Congressional District). But this scandal may envelop more Republicans, and Democrats have an excellent argument that whether it is former EPA administrator Scott Pruitt’s egregious ethical conduct, or any of the Cabinet officials who allegedly abused their travel, or Trump’s foreign emoluments and his family’s apparent self-enrichment, the GOP has become the party that tolerates corruption. Far from cleaning up government, having control of the House, Senate and White House has meant no Republican gets held accountable for anything — unless it is by the FBI and the courts.”
Link of entire report: Chris Collins hands Democrats another scandal