Today is not a good day for Alnoor Ebrahim. He’s a 57-year-old U.S. citizen born in Tanzania who used to work for AT&T and has just been sentenced to up to two years in prison for illegally sharing secrets regarding Apple and RIM’s sales numbers.
In a Manhattan court room, Ebrahim pleaded guilty to selling insider information about the iPhone and BlackBerry devices. “I provided insider information concerning AT&T’s sales of Apple’s iPhone and RIM’s Blackberry products, as well as other handset devices sold through AT&T distribution channels,” he confessed to U.S. District Judge Paul Oetken.
Ebrahim was part of a network in which employees of firms such as Primary Global Research, in this case, would aid in the transmission of company secrets to gain extra cash. He’s being charged with one count of conspiracy to commit wire and securities fraud and the aforementioned recommended sentence by prosecutors of a maximum of two years behind bars.
The former AT&T employee’s actions didn’t draw kind words from a company spokesman. “We took this matter very seriously and cooperated fully with the authorities,” said Marty Richtman representing AT&T. “The conduct alleged was clearly against our code of business conduct.”
Alnoor Ebrahim is only the very latest in a number of people being targeted recently in the U.S. government’s effort to double down on punishment for insider trading. A former Goldman Sachs board member, Rajat Gupta, was convicted on Friday of leaking company information and faces up to 25 years in the slammer.