April 14, 2017 / 3:39 PM / 4 months ago

SEC freezes brokerage accounts behind alleged insider trading

FILE PHOTO: The seal of the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission hangs on the wall at SEC headquarters in Washington, DC, U.S. on June 24, 2011.Jonathan Ernst/File Photo

WASHINGTON (Reuters) - The Securities and Exchange Commission said on Friday it had frozen assets in two brokerage accounts used last week to reap more than $1 million in alleged insider trading profits in connection with a merger announcement by Liberty Interactive Corp and General Communication Inc.

The agency said in a statement the traders, currently unknown, allegedly used foreign brokerage accounts in Britain and Lebanon to purchase call option contracts through U.S.-based brokerages and on U.S.-based exchanges in the days leading up to the announcement of the acquisition.

Liberty Interactive announced a deal on April 4 that included the purchase of General Communication for $1.12 billion.

Reporting by Washington Newsroom; Editing by Chizu Nomiyama

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