Former Qualcomm executive Jing Wang pleads guilty to insider trading

SAN DIEGO - A former Qualcomm executive pleaded guilty Monday in San Diego to insider trading in shares of Qualcomm and Atheros Communications and laundering the proceeds of his illegal activities using an offshore shell company.

Jing Wang, 51, pleaded guilty before U.S. District Judge William Q. Hayes.

"Jing Wang blatantly and repeatedly abused the trust placed in him by Qualcomm and the company's shareholders," said U.S. Attorney Laura Duffy. "To make matters worse, he then misused the financial system to conceal his insider trading profits and enlisted his brother and stockbroker to obstruct several investigations. Wang's obstructive acts, though ultimately unsuccessful, were serious affronts to the rule of law."

Wang -- the former executive vice president and president of Global Business Operations for Qualcomm Inc. -- committed insider trading on three separate occasions over a 10-month period in 2010 and 2011, according to court documents.

In early 2010, Wang purchased $277,739 of Qualcomm stock prior to the company's unexpected announcement of a dividend increase and stock repurchase program.

In December 2010, while in Hong Kong, Wang purchased Atheros stock hours after Qualcomm's Board of Directors made a non-public offer to purchase Atheros. A few weeks later, in January 2011, Wang directed his stockbroker, Gary Yin, to sell the Atheros stock in a brokerage account held in the name of an offshore entity, Unicorn Global Enterprises, and used the proceeds to purchase Qualcomm stock one day before Qualcomm announced record earnings results, prosecutors said.

In total, Wang illegally gained about $250,000 from the three illegal transactions, according to the government.

Wang was indicted last September. His brother, Bing Wang, is wanted on an international arrest warrant and is believed to be in China.

Yin pleaded guilty to conspiring with the Wangs to obstruct justice and launder money and is scheduled to be sentenced Sept. 15.

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