Mavericks billionaire owner Mark Cuban was found not guilty of all counts by a federal jury in his insider trading trial, according to the Associated Press and other reports.
Securities and Exchange Commission lawyers accused Cuban of knowingly violating securities laws when he traded his 6 percent stake in Mamma.com in 2004 after learning insider information in a phone call from the company’s CEO. Prosecutors said that Cuban immediately sold his 600,000 shares to avoid losing $750,000.
From The Dallas Morning News:
“He knew he was screwed,” Jan Folena, the SEC’s lead lawyer, said during closing arguments. “He knew he couldn’t sell, but he sold anyway. That is insider trading.”
Cuban and his attorneys said there was no privileged information in the conversation and claimed the SEC’s case was built on misleading comments and character attacks and was an example of the federal government run amok.
“Not even Mark Cuban has the power to make the government stop,” lead attorney Tom Melsheimer told jurors. “Not even Mark Cuban can make the government admit it is wrong. Only you, the jury, have that power.
Cuban spoke to reporters afterward: