Chief compliance officer to leave SAC Capital Advisors -source

NEW YORK Fri Feb 14, 2014 8:39pm EST

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NEW YORK Feb 14 (Reuters) - Steven Kessler, the chief compliance officer at SAC Capital Advisors, is leaving the firm at the end of the month, a source familiar with the move said on Friday.

Kessler, who joined SAC in 2005, is leaving to spend more time with his family, said the source. John Casey will become the firm's interim compliance chief.

A spokesman for the firm declined to comment.

The departure comes as SAC, once one of the world's biggest and most successful hedge funds, turns itself into a family office that will manage founder Steven A. Cohen's $9 billion personal fortune.

The firm was forced to stop managing money for outside investors last November as part of an agreement to plead guilty to insider-trading charges and pay $1.8 billion in penalties.

Kessler, who came to the Stamford, Connecticut-based firm from Goldman Sachs, was one of a handful of top SAC officials who received subpoenas as the government built its case against the firm. (Reporting by Svea Herbst-Bayliss; Editing by Prudence Crowther)

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