Man allegedly behind global insider trading scheme arrested in S’pore; US says he pocketed millions


SINGAPORE: A Singaporean man accused of being the leader of an international insider trading and money laundering scheme has been arrested here, following a request in June from the US.

Ge Zhi (pic), 33, was apprehended on July 3 and taken to the State Courts the next day, where he was ordered to be held under the Extradition Act.

The Straits Times understands the US will be filing extradition papers for him to be taken to the district court in Massachusetts.

Ge and his alleged co-conspirators are accused by the US authorities of pocketing tens of millions of dollars in illegal profits on the back of a securities fraud scheme.

They are said to have received non-public information about at least 10 companies whose shares were traded on the US stock exchange.

The information included financial performance and merger-and-acquisition activity of the firms, which they received from company insiders.

Ge is said to have recruited others to trade in the stocks, purportedly directing them on how to trade on the information and when to withdraw their proceeds.

Investigators in the US alleged that the illegal profits were then purportedly laundered through various means, including cash payments and international financial transactions, with the intention of, among other things, concealing the sources of the proceeds and masking the identities of the scheme’s participants.

Among other things, Ge is said to have instructed a co-conspirator to transfer US$300,000 in illicit proceeds into a Hong Kong bank account, and to say that the money was payment to an antique watch dealer.

A Singapore Police Force spokesperson declined to provide specifics when contacted by ST, but said a warrant of arrest was issued for a 33-year-old Singaporean man on June 28, 2024, for offences allegedly committed in the US.

“As the matter is before the courts, we are unable to comment further,” the spokesperson added.

Ge’s lawyer, Favian Kang from Adelphi Law Chambers, also declined to comment on the matter.

ST contacted the US Department of Justice but a spokesperson declined comment.

In court on July 4, State Counsel Anupriya A. Daniel applied for Ge to be remanded for seven days, pending an extradition request from the US.

The US has an extradition treaty with Singapore.

The counsel said that the authorities in the US had asked only for Ge to be apprehended.

In response to Kang’s query on when the extradition papers are expected, State Counsel Daniel said she was not sure, but added that the time limit is two months.

Kang then requested the prosecutor to liaise with the US counterpart to expedite the matter.

During proceedings, District Judge Brenda Tan asked Ge if he wished to consent to surrender to the foreign state, and he said no.

Under the Extradition Act, fugitives can give consent to their extradition and waive extradition proceedings.

This is in line with international practice, to save state resources and prevent the fugitive from being detained longer than necessary in Singapore.

Ge maintained his refusal in his second court appearance on July 10.

State Counsel Daniel again requested that Ge be remanded for a week, pending the receipt of a formal extradition request.

Ge asked the court if he could get a bail hearing, but Senior District Judge Ong Hian Sun said no.

He will return to court on July 16. – The Straits Times/ANN

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Singapore , US , insider trading , extradition

   

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