‘Chinese Defense’ Unravels, Jennifer Wang and Ruben Chen Sentenced for Insider Trading

Jennifer and Ruben
Were Ruben and Jennifer Wang too Chinese to know right from wrong? Photo: Reuters

Former Morgan Stanley financial analyst Jennifer Wang and her husband, former ING analyst Ruben (Ruopian) Chen, were sentenced yesterday for insider trading. Using an account in the name of Wang's mother, Zhiling Feng, who lives in Beijing, the couple made over $600,000 trading in three companies advised by Morgan Stanley's real-estate subsidiary before they were busted, then pleaded not guilty. Rather awesomely, their lawyer attributed their crime to "cultural differences." "In People's Republic of China insider trading is only rarely, and not until very recently, prosecuted as an offense," she told judge Colleen McMahon, who was having none of it. "I know what it is to be a professional exposed every day in countless ways to inside information," McMahon said. "You can't possibly not know that you are not allowed to do it." Wang wasn't too Chinese to understand the verdict; according to Reuters, she "wept silently" as the judge handed down an eighteen-month sentence to her and her husband, which they will serve one after the other so that at least one of them can be with their son, who was born this summer.

Ex Morgan Stanley Analyst and Husband Get 18 Months [Reuters/Portfolio]