Mark Cuban to face off with SEC over Insider Trading

Mark Cuban the owner of the NBA Dallas Mavericks was participating in a June 2004 celebrity golf tournament when an email came through from a top executive.

The email was from Guy Faure, the CEO of the company and asked Cuban to call him as soon as possible.

Cuban the self-made billionaire from Dallas was the Canadian Web firm’s largest shareholder at the time.

The conversation of eight minutes on the telephone that followed is the heart of one of the most expensive and highest profile individual insider trading cases ever brought to trial by the Securities and Exchange Commission.

Following over five years of back and forth legal wrangling, Monday the case will go before the jury in a federal courtroom in Dallas.

Lawyers from the SEC say that Faure gave confidential insider data to Cuban about the planned offering of new stock to investors that had been targeted by the company. The SEC also said that Cuban then sold all of his stake of 6% in the business.

Cuban, by selling the stock avoided potential losses of what was estimated at $750,000. However, Cuban says he received information that was not confidential, made no commitment to keep that information confidential and no agreement to keep his stock based on the information.

The Dallas Mavericks owner said he did not have a fiduciary duty with since he was not serving in an executive capacity with the company.

He said it has cost him a great deal of money and time to fight the SEC because he will not allow the government to bully him. He said he invited all those not sure of his innocence to read the evidence to see the truth for themselves.

If the jury sides with the SEC, the most it would receive would be $2.5 million.