Tottenham owner, Joe Lewis surrenders himself to US authorities in Manhattan after being indicted for ‘brazen’ insider trading


British billionaire and Tottenham Hotspur football team owner Joe Lewis has surrendered himself to US authorities in Manhattan in the wake of his indictment for insider trading.

Mail Sport reported on Tuesday night that federal prosecutors have accused the 86-year-old of slipping confidential stock tips to his romantic partners, private pilots, and friends so that they could make millions of dollars.

Lewis exploited his entrée to various corporations to reap lucrative secrets, passed them on to people in his own inner circle, and prompted them to trade on the knowledge, prosecutors said.

The billionaire, who owns a $250million superyacht on which he sometimes lives, has been charged with 13 counts of securities fraud [under title 15], each of which carries a maximum sentence of 20 years in prison; three counts of securities fraud [under title 18], each of which carries a maximum sentence of 25 years in prison; and three counts of conspiracy, each of which carries a maximum sentence of five years in prison.

A statement from the US Attorney’s office on Wednesday read: ‘Joe Lewis self-surrendered this morning to federal authorities and is expected to be presented in Manhattan federal district court sometime today on criminal charges.’

On Tuesday, in a dramatic statement delivered by video, US Attorney Damian Williams said: ‘My office, the Southern District of New York has indicted Joe Lewis, the British billionaire, for orchestrating a brazen insider trading scheme.

‘We allege that for years Joe Lewis abused his access to corporate boardrooms and repeatedly provided inside information to his romantic partners, his personal assistants, his private pilots, and his friends.

‘Those folks then traded on that inside information and made millions of dollars on the stock market because – thanks to Lewis – those bets were a sure thing.’

Williams added: ‘Now, none of this was necessary. Joe Lewis is a wealthy man. But as we allege he used inside information as a way to compensate his employees or shower gifts on his friends and lovers. It is classic corporate corruption.

‘It’s cheating and it’s against the law. That’s why Joe Lewis has been indicted and will face justice here in the Southern District of New York.’

David M. Zornow, an attorney for Lewis, revealed his client had already arrived in the US ‘to answer these ill-conceived charges’ and would fight them vigorously.

‘The government has made an egregious error in judgment in charging Mr. Lewis, an 86-year-old man of impeccable integrity and prodigious accomplishment,’ Zornow said in a statement.

‘Mr Lewis has come to the US voluntarily to answer these ill-conceived charges, and we will defend him vigorously in court.’ The charges include securities fraud and conspiracy.

In a statement released on Wednesday morning, Tottenham said: ‘This is a legal matter unconnected with the club and as such we have no comment.’


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