chapter  1
Pages 3

The basic purpose of this book is to set out and explain the present law and practice governing the commission of the criminal offence of insider dealing (together with certain other securities ‘market’ offences) in the UK. Since 1987, it is said that approximately 104 cases of insider dealing have been investigated by the Surveillance or Insider Dealing Unit of the London Stock Exchange and subsequently reported to the relevant government department (which, for these purposes, remains the Department of Trade and Industry). Of that number, only 33 cases have been the subject of a criminal prosecution and around half that number have resulted in conviction of the defendants charged. Those figures are not particularly impressive given that insider dealing is regarded by many ‘in the know’ as being a fairly regular occurrence. Unfortunately, where unusual or even just coincidental share transactions have occurred and probable insider dealing has been identified by the London Stock Exchange, it has not always been possible to bring to book the people thought to be ‘behind’ what has taken place. Often, those instigating such share transactions have hidden their identities behind nominee companies situated well outside the UK and the jurisdiction of its courts. The result has often been that only those directly involved in ‘fronting’ the insider dealing (usually just ‘small fry’) have been caught.