A federal grand jury in Newark, New Jersey, returned an indictment that was unsealed today charging a Wall Street bond trader for a scheme to manipulate the U.S. Treasuries market.
“Securities fraud and manipulation, as alleged here, victimize investors and degrade the integrity of our public securities markets,” said Acting Assistant Attorney General Nicole M. Argentieri of the Justice Department’s Criminal Division. “The department will continue to protect our financial systems and investors by holding accountable those who violate our securities laws.”
According to court documents, between approximately April 2018 and May 2019, Jeyakumar Nadarajah, 39, who was employed as a director at a bank in New York and head of the desk that was responsible for trading U.S. Treasuries, allegedly engaged in a scheme to mislead market participants in the secondary (or cash) market for U.S. Treasuries. Nadarajah is alleged to have engaged in a spoofing and layering scheme that involved placing orders that he did not intend to execute in order to create the appearance of false supply and demand, and to fraudulently induce other market participants to trade at prices, quantities, and times that they otherwise would not have traded.
“There’s money to be made in the financial markets. And if there’s money to be made, it means that fraudsters are right there looking to take advantage of other market participants,” said Inspector in Charge Eric Shen of U.S. Postal Inspection Service (USPIS) Criminal Investigations Group. “Whether it’s a simple investment scam or a complex scheme like the one Mr. Nadarajah allegedly tried to pull off, Postal Inspectors are there to bring the scammers to justice.”
Nadarajah is charged with two counts of wire fraud, seven counts of securities fraud, and seven counts of securities manipulation. If convicted, he faces a maximum penalty of 20 years in prison for each count of wire fraud, securities fraud, and securities manipulation.
USPIS is investigating the case.
Assistant Chief Scott Armstrong and Trial Attorney John J. Liolos of the Criminal Division’s Fraud Section are prosecuting the case.
An indictment is merely an allegation. All defendants are presumed innocent until proven guilty beyond a reasonable doubt in a court of law.