US prosecutors have charged a former Goldman Sachs employee with securities fraud for allegedly tipping off friends about deals over Xbox chat.
According to the Justice Department and SEC, Anthony Viggiano provided material nonpublic information about several deals to two friends while working at Goldman and Blackstone.
He did this through apps such as Signal as well as the Xbox audio chat function in order to evade detection by law enforcement, says the DoJ. The three allegedly made more than $400,000 on trades using the information.
Viggiano faces eight counts of securities fraud, each of which carries a maximum sentence of 20 years in prison, and one count of conspiracy, which carries a up to five years.
His friends, Christopher Salamone and Stephen Forlano have also been charged. Salamone has pleaded guilty and is cooperating with prosecutors.
The indictment includes a recording made by Salamone of a phone conversation with Viggiano:
"Salamone: You have shit where you're giving fucking information to fucking Steve [Forlano Jr.]?
VIGGIANO: Nah. Nah. Because similar to you . .. signal, or like XBOX 360 chat, there's no tracing that. Good luck ever finding that. So, I mean, at worst - we're talking worst-case scenario, maybe I said something in . ... like the very first one. But that's the
US Attorney Damian Williams says: “No matter how evasive insider traders’ conduct, or the lengths gone to hide their offenses, this Office will track down and prosecute those who attempt to cheat the system.”