Connection between doctors, insider traders


One of the saddest aspects of the ongoing insider trading scandals is the obliteration of promising medical careers by hedge fund excesses.

In some cases, hedge fund managers have so seductively lured and then compromised once-proud doctors at the top of their profession, plying them with expensive gifts and good humor, no doubt making them brilliant and wanted. That is clearly seen in the scandal surrounding Mathew Martoma, who had his way with an 80-year-old doctor, Sidney Gilman.

The doctor was putty in his hands, somehow induced into offering up secrets, if you believe prosecutors. Gilman will not be charged with a crime and has agreed to be a witness against his seducer. There was a similar dynamic in the FrontPoint scandal, which involved a hedge fund manager wooing a doctor with knowledge of clinical trials. The twist in the FrontPoint scandal was that the hedge fund manager was himself a former doctor who fell hard for all that the hedge fund industry offers, including the temptations to cheat.

Bloomberg Businessweek  offers a thorough excavation of Chip Skowron III, a once brilliant doctor who turned to insider trading, which landed him in jail to serve a five-year sentence. His fall from grace was nothing short of remarkable. Many things can drive a man to crime, including an incredible need to fill personal voids. Skowron lost his mother, with whom he was close, on the same day he found out he had been admitted to Yale medical school.

In the end, all crime sagas are human sagas. The real story often isn't known until well after people check into prison.

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