Group of seven elite golfers charged with insider trading
Golf Culture

Group of seven elite golfers charged with insider trading

Phil Mickelson apparently wasn't the only golfer being tailed by the Securities and Exchange Commission under suspicion of insider trading.

Seven golfers have been indicted by the SEC, charged with making some $500,000 on insider trading of American Superconductor, now known as AMSC. AMSC makes wind turbine-control systems.

Investigators allege the group of seven -- six of which are based in Massachusetts -- make the money over a multi-year period, including on a 2011 tip that the company would report a weaker-than-expected quarter. The SEC claims Eric McPhail befriended an AMSC executive, a member of Oakley Golf Club with McPhail, who confided details of the company's financial positions to McPhail. McPhail then disseminated the information, often via email, to his other golf buddies.

Those buddies include Douglas A. Parigian of Lowell, Mass.; John J. Gilmartin of Andover, Mass.; Douglas Clapp of Walpole, the current Massachusetts Golf Association player of the year; Jamie A. Meadows of Springfield, Mass.; and brothers James A. “Andy” Drohen of Granville, the 2003 Massachusetts Amateur champion, and John C. Drohen of Cranston, R.I.

McPhail has qualified for six USGA championships, played in at least 15 Massachusetts Amateur championships, was the state Public Links champion in 1998 and 2001 and state junior champ in 1991. In 2009, McPhail and his wife Sara became the third couple in the club's history, dating back to 1898, to win their respective club championships in the same year.

In 2012, Andy Drohen became the first golfer in Massachusetts history to win all four of the state's major amateur championships when he won the public links event.

“Whether the tips are passed on the golf course, in a bar, or elsewhere, the SEC will continue to track down those who seek an unfair advantage trading stocks,” said Paul G. Levenson, director of the SEC’s Boston Regional Office.  “Working with our partners in law enforcement, we are sending a message to all investors that insider trading does not pay.” 

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Ryan Ballengee

Ryan Ballengee is founder and editor of Golf News Net. He has been writing and broadcasting about golf for over a decade, working for NBC Sports, Golf Channel, Yahoo Sports and SB Nation. Ballengee lives in the Washington, D.C. area with his family. He used to be a good golfer.

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