Congressman Collins Expected To Plead Guilty In Insider Trading Case

Mack Rosenberg
September 30, 2019 - 1:19 pm

NEW YORK (WCBS 880) — Western New York Congressman Chris Collins is expected to plead guilty in a federal insider trading case, according to court papers.

The Republican congressman who serves New York's 27th District was indicted on conspiracy, wire fraud and other counts.

Collins sat on the board of an Australian pharmaceutical company and got word that one a trial drug to treat multiple sclerosis was a complete failure.

Federal prosecutors say Collins, who was already under investigation by a House Ethics Committee, then called his son and tipped him off before the news went public and the stock price plunged. 

His son, Cameron, allegedly sold more than $1 million in stock and passed the information on to Steve Zarsky, the father of his ex-fiancée.

Collins won reelection amid the charges a year ago.

On Monday, a spokesperson for House Speaker Nancy Pelosi said Collins has sent a letter of resignation that will take effect when Congress meets in a brief session on Tuesday. It would be up to Gov. Andrew Cuomo to set a special election to fill the seat, which leans Republican.

A change of plea hearing is scheduled for Tuesday in Manhattan. The court filing didn't specify which charges Collins would plead guilty to.

A similar hearing has been scheduled Thursday for Collins' son.

The 69-year-old Collins was facing trial in February 2020 along with his son and Zarsky. All three had previously pleaded not guilty.

The Associated Press contributed to this report.