Chris Collins set to change his plea on biotech insider trading scandal, exiting House seat
Chris Collins never lost the support of base Republican voters when the feds came down hard on his alleged involvement in an insider trading scandal linked to a high-risk Australian biotech company. But that may not keep him out of prison.
The New York Republican sent in his letter of resignation — effective today — as Collins will reportedly soon plead guilty to the trading scandal. There’s no word if he has struck a deal with prosecutors.
Collins didn’t just invest in Innate Immunotherapeutics. He joined the board, gathered the largest chunk of stock and became one of the chief advocates for its experimental drug for multiple sclerosis, touting the stock to other members of the House as well as administration officials.
Then the biotech’s CEO sent out word to the board in the summer of 2017 that the drug had failed a crucial clinical test, and Collins immediately warned his son, Cameron, who dumped the portfolio, saving himself a loss of $768,000, according to the indictment. The feds also named Cameron Collins’ father-in-law to be as joining the insiders who jumped out.
Collins won re-election last fall by a mere 1,000-vote margin, which put the GOP in a ticklish situation. Now Republicans are expected to easily retain the seat with a new face without the baggage.