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Last Updated: Thursday, 10 March, 2005, 01:08 GMT
More arrests in ImClone scandal
Samuel Waksal
Mr Waksal, his friends and family have all come into the spotlight
Two friends of jailed ImClone boss Sam Waksal, the man at the centre of the Martha Stewart scandal, have been arrested on charges of insider trading.

Zvi Fuks, 68, and Sabina Ben-Yehuda, 51, are accused of selling their shares in ImClone after Mr Waksal told them about an upcoming company announcement.

ImClone shares tumbled on the news, and a police probe ended with Mr Waksal and lifestyle guru Ms Stewart both in jail.

Lawyers for Mr Fuks and Ms Ben-Yehuda denied the charges.

"We believe the charges are entirely without merit," said Stephen Fishbein, a lawyer for Ms Ben-Yehuda.

Mr Fuks's counsel Joel Cohen said his client was "not guilty and will be vindicated".

Ms Ben-Yehuda, who worked at an investment fund founded by Mr Waksal, is said to have a close personal relationship with Mr Fuks, who is chairman of the Department of Radiation Oncology at Memorial Sloan Kettering hospital.

If convicted the two face a maximum prison term of 15 years and fines of up to $1.25m (649,500).

Good friends

The charges allege that Mr Waksal warned Ms Ben-Yehuda before the stock market opened on 27 December, 2001, that the US Food and Drug Administration would not approve ImClone's cancer treatment drug Erbitux.

Ms Ben-Yehuda is then said to have tipped off Mr Fuks, who sold all of his 89,173 ImClone shares worth about $5.3m.

Ms Ben-Yehuda allegedly offloaded 1,178 shares for about $73,453.

ImClone got the FDA's rejection on 28 December, and the announcement smacked the company's shares 16% lower.

The fall out from the scandal has dominated headlines, with the media mainly focusing on the fate of Martha Stewart.

Stewart and her former broker, Peter Bacanovic, were convicted in March 2004 for conspiring to lie about the reasons behind the sale of her ImClone shares on 27 December, 2001.

She was released from prison last week after serving five months.

Mr Waksal was sentenced to 87 months in prison after pleading guilty in October 2003 to charges of insider trading.


SEE ALSO:
ImClone sues jailed boss over tax
11 Mar 04 |  Business
ImClone founder jailed
10 Jun 03 |  Business
Stewart resigns as company head
05 Jun 03 |  Business
Partial deal in US insider case
11 Mar 03 |  Business
Ex-ImClone boss admits fraud
15 Oct 02 |  Business
Martha Stewart sued by investor
22 Aug 02 |  Business
Ex-ImClone boss charged with fraud
12 Jun 02 |  Business


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