NSW Supreme Court sentences husband of Sydney publicist 1-2 years jail term for insider trading

By @vitthernandez on
Roxy Jacenko & Oliver Curtis
Photo of Roxy Jacenko & Oliver Curtis posted on Dec 3, 2015 on Jacenko's Facebook page. Facebook/Roxy Jacenko

Tips on insider trading received by the Australian government, which reached 30,000 in 2011, are apparently paying off. On Friday, the New South Wales Supreme Court Judge Lucy McCallum sentenced the husband of a Sydney publicist to jail for insider trading.

The Sydney Morning Herald reports that McCallum gave Oliver Curtis, husband of Sydney publicist Roxy Jacenko, one to two years prison sentence for conspiracy to commit insider trading with John Hartman, his ex-best friend. In her verdict delivered at St James Supreme Court, McCallum notes that Curtis and Hartman, who comes from privileged families, were motivated by greed in profiting from an illegal deal to fund their lifestyle characterised by conspicuous extravagance.

The judge likewise observes the lack of contrition of Curtis in court and after the verdict was read. He was in a “self-interested pursuit of wealth,” while Hartman, in contrast, accepted responsibility for his offence.

The verdict ended 12 days of trial and two days of deliberation by the jury which found the 30-year-old Curtis on June 2 guilty of conspiracy to commit insider trading. Hartman, who passed on the tips to Curtis while working as an equities dealer in Sydney, has served 15 months in jail for his role.

Because of good behaviour, Hartman was released in March 2012 from the Silverwater Correctional Cenre for the rest of his three-year sentence. McCallum acknowledges the cooperation of Hartman with authorities, which is opposite that shown by Curtis, although the judge says his sentence would not be increased because of his non-cooperation.

Jacenko, after hearing the sentence, rushed to embrace Curtis who gave her his wedding ring and a folded $50 bill before he was taken into custody, reports the Herald Sun.  Although McCallum believes Curtis would not repeat his offence, she says a custodial sentence was needed to prevent others from committing similar white collar crimes which are difficult to detect and prosecute without the tips.

The legal team of Curtis asked for a suspended sentence or home detention with intensive corrections order on the ground that the media spotlight was sufficient punishment, but the judge rejected the request. While Curtis was only 21 when he engaged in insider trading, which netted him and Hartman $1.4 million, happened nine years ago, McCallum points out he was a worldly and business-savvy young man at that age.

VIDEO: White Collar Criminal Oliver Curtis