Ex-Goldman employee settles SEC insider case, to give up profits

NEW YORK (Reuters) - A former Goldman Sachs Group Inc employee hired to help the bank root out illegal conduct settled Securities and Exchange Commission insider trading charges by agreeing to give up $468,132 in profit he made by stealing from the Wall Street bank’s email system, the SEC said.

The SEC on Wednesday said Yue Han, who had worked in Goldman’s compliance division, consented to a final judgment under which he will relinquish various brokerage accounts that had been frozen after the regulator sued him in November.

Han also consented to a ban from associating with brokers, dealers, investment advisers and others in the financial services industry. He did not admit wrongdoing.

The defendant did not immediately respond to an email request for comment. His final judgment was entered by U.S. District Judge Valerie Caproni in Manhattan.

Han, whose work at Goldman involved building computer programs designed to root out illegal conduct such as insider trading, was accused of exploiting his access to Goldman emails to trade on pending transactions on which the bank was advising.

According to the regulator, Han bought “out of the money” call options, a bet that prices would rise, between July and October 2015 in four companies on the verge of being bought: KLA-Tencor Corp, Rentrak Corp, Yodlee Inc and Zulily Inc.

Rentrak, Yodlee and Zulily were all Goldman clients, as also was Lam Research Corp, which agreed last October to buy KLA-Tencor.

The SEC said Han used multiple accounts to make his trades, including one belonging to his father, Wei Han, who agreed to be jointly responsible for $434,876 of the judgment.

Yue Han and his father are both believed to be in China. Contact information for Wei Han was not immediately available.

The case is SEC v. Han, U.S. District Court, Southern District of New York, No. 15-09260.

Reporting by Jonathan Stempel and Nate Raymond in New York; Editing by Leslie Adler