Outer Temple Chambers silk Michael Bowes QC has taken a leading role on a high-profile insider trading case that has pitted him against QCs from Doughty Street, Three Raymond Buildings, 2 Bedford Row and 2 Hare Court.
The Financial Services Authority (FSA) has appointed Bowes to lead its prosecution of a group of seven men accused with running a £1m print room spread-bet scam.
Southwark Crown Court has been told that the friends and their relatives obtained confidential takeover documents from high-security printing rooms at two of the City’s biggest investment banks.
The men are accused of using the information from JPMorgan Cazenove and UBS to bet on the shares of six companies – Reuters, Biffa, Premier Oil Vega, Enodis and Thus – between May 2006 and May 2008.
UBS employee Ali Mustafa faces four charges of insider trading. He is represented by Charter Chambers QC, Jerome Lynch and Kuljeet Dobe of Goldsmith Chambers, instructed by Rustem Guardian Solicitors partner Raj Dayal.
The six men accused of handling the trades and netting between £42,000 and £455,000 are Pardip Saini, Paresh Shah, Neten Shah, Bijal Shah, Truptesh Patel and Mitesh Shah.
Saini’s legal team is Furnival Chambers QC John Charles Rees and 2 Bedford Row’s Tim Hogman, instructed by Bark & Co senior solicitor Maria Stalbow.
Paresh Shah is defended by Doughty Street Chambers’ Edward Rees QC and Robin Barclay of 2 Hare Court, instructed by Byrne & Partners.
Neten Shah’s QC is Anthony Shaw of 18 Red Lion Court and 2 Bedford Row’s Maria Dineen, instructed by Crowell & Moring partner Gerallt Owen.
Three Raymond Buildings’ Patrick Gibbs QC and Alison Pople of 2 Bedford Row are representing Bijal Shah on the instruction of Birds Solicitors partner Steven Bird.
Patel’s legal team is made up of 2 Bedford Row’s Peter Lodder QC and Jonathan Goldring, a director at Bankside Law.
Spread betting company City Index broker Mitesh Shah, who the FSA claims assisted the other defendants, is defended by Charter Chambers’ Ian Bourne QC and Michael Shaw of 9-12 Bell Yard, instructed by Whitworth & Green Solicitors lawyer Rajesh Shah.
The trial is ongoing. The men were arrested in July 2008 after one of the FSA’s biggest ever investigations.
The case is among the biggest brought to court since the FSA cracked down on insider trading after Margaret Cole took over its enforcement division in 2005.
Cole will leave the City watchdog at the end of this month and will go on gardening leave until the end of August (15 February 2012).