May 12, 2017 / 8:39 PM / 3 months ago

Retired baseball player DeCinces found guilty of insider trading

May 12 (Reuters) - A retired Major League Baseball player and another man were found guilty on Friday of having engaged in insider trading, while jurors deadlocked on charges against a onetime chief executive of a medical device company.

Douglas DeCinces, a former Baltimore Orioles third baseman, and David Parker, a friend and business partner of the ex-baseball player, were found guilty by a federal jury in Santa Ana, California, on charges of tender offer fraud.

Jurors deadlocked on several other counts against DeCinces and on all counts against former Advanced Medical Optics Inc Chief Executive Officer James Mazzo, who was accused of tipping DeCinces to inside information. A judge declared a mistrial in his case.

The verdict was confirmed by the court and by a spokesman for Acting U.S. Attorney Sandra Brown.

DeCinces, 66, was a Major League Baseball player from 1973 to 1987 playing with the Orioles and the California Angels. At the time of his indictment, he was the president and CEO of a real estate development firm in Irvine, California.

Kenneth Julian, a lawyer for DeCinces, called the verdict a “disappointing result.” He said DeCinces will file a motion for a new trial.

The verdict came more than four years after charges were first announced in November 2012 against DeCinces and Parker for engaging in insider trading before Abbott Laboratories' $1.36 billion acquisition of Advanced Medical Optics in 2009.

Those criminal charges came after DeCinces in 2011 agreed to pay $2.5 million to resolve an earlier civil case by the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission over the same deal, without admitting or denying wrongdoing.

Prosecutors later in 2014 added criminal charges against Mazzo, who they said had tipped off his close personal friend DeCinces about the Abbott deal and Advanced Medical Optics' 2007 acquisition of another medical device company, IntraLase Corp.

By trading ahead of the Abbott deal's announcement, DeCinces made $1.3 million in illicit profits, prosecutors said. They said he also tipped Parker, who made $347,920 trading ahead of the deal.

Mazzo, DeCinces and Parker denied wrongdoing at trial. Their case had been put on hold last year pending the outcome of a closely-watched case before the U.S. Supreme Court over what constituted insider trading.

Lawyers for Mazzo had no immediate comment. Parker's lawyer did not respond to a request for comment.

The case is U.S. v. Mazzo, et al, U.S. District Court, Central District of California, No. 12-cr-00269. (Reporting by Nate Raymond in Boston; Editing by David Gregorio)

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