SEC Charges Former Heartland CEO, Romantic Partner in Insider Trading Scheme

According to the SEC’s complaint, Robert O. Carr provided his longtime girlfriend, Katherine M. Hanratty, with confidential information about a potential acquisition of Heartland Payment Systems, Inc. by another payment processing company. In the weeks leading up to the merger announcement, Carr allegedly gave Hanratty $1 million to open a brokerage account and instructed her to use almost all of the funds to purchase Heartland stock. The SEC alleges that Hanratty followed Carr’s instructions, opening the account and purchasing more than 11,000 shares of Heartland stock. After the merger was announced, Heartland’s stock price rose substantially, and Hanratty allegedly sought Carr’s advice about when to sell the stock. Hanratty ultimately liquidated her entire position in a single day, earning substantial profits on the sale.

via Robert O. Carr and Katherine M. Hanratty (Release No. LR-24191; Jul. 10, 2018).