SEC Settles Mapco Case

Three former Mapco Inc. employees have settled allegations of insider trading before the company was bought by energy trader and pipeline operator Williams Cos. Inc. for $3.46 billion in 1998, U.S. regulators said.

In two civil complaints filed in U.S. District Court in New York, the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) also accused five others of insider trading in 1997, which reaped profits totaling $134,208, according to Reuters.

The former workers at Mapco, which marketed natural gas liquids and propane, and three others settled the allegations without admitting or denying guilt, the SEC said. One defendant has not settled with the agency's enforcement division.

As part of the settlement, the seven defendants were ordered to pay a total of $107,098, which includes disgorgement, interest and fines. The SEC said it was seeking $20,375 in profits made by the eighth defendant and $44,931 made by others.

The SEC named Harry Daily and James Healy, both vice presidents; Patrick Danaher, general manager; Healy's brother, Paul, an accountant; Robert Van Hoecke, a consultant; John Doherty, Danaher's childhood friend; and Timothy Ward and Robert Wittman, oil futures brokers.

Daily learned Mapco would be bought by Tulsa-based Williams 10 days before the news would be publicly announced, allegedly bought MAPCO stock and about made $12,000 in illegal profits, the report said.

James Healey provided information of the pending acquisition to his brother, Paul Healey, who then bought company stock, the SEC alleged. The Healeys gave the tip to their aunt, who made $3,228, the SEC alleged.

A separate complaint alleged that Danaher tipped Doherty, who in turn tipped Ward and Wittman, two oil brokers in New York who made more than $10,000 after buying Mapco stock. The SEC's case against Doherty has not yet been settled.
This ad will auto-close in 10 seconds