Lawyers accused of insider dealing to challenge FSA’s case

The partners at the centre of an insider trading investigation have opted for an old style committal hearing, signalling that they intend to challenge the Financial Services Authority (FSA) over whether there is enough evidence to bring the case to trial.

Former Dorsey & Whitney corporate partner Andrew Rimmington and former McDermott Will & Emery partner Michael McFall are to appear at Westminster Magistrates Court in September.

The prosecution centres around the £305m takeover of biotech firm Neutec by Novartis in 2006. Former Neutec financial director Peter King is also being charged (20 May 2009).

McFall has instructed Kingsley Napley criminal and regulatory partner Stephen Gentle to represent him in the case. Rimmington is being represented by Barlow Lyde & Gilbert financial services partner Ian Mason, who has instructed Richard Lissack QC and Oliver Assersohn of Outer Temple Chmbers.

The FSA has instructed Michael Bowes QC, also of Outer Temple.

An old style committal hearing gives the defence the opportunity to strike out the case if there is not sufficient evidence for a trial.

McFall left McDermott several months ago to launch a private equity advisory service. He had joined the US firm’s City office in 2004 as a corporate partner, having previously been at Dorsey.

Rimmington lost his job at Dorsey & Whitney after the allegations surfaced in May this year (22 May 2009).