Former Semitool Worker Charged for Insider Trading

By Beacon Staff

HELENA — A former paralegal at a Kalispell-based semiconductor company and her father have settled insider trading charges filed after regulators alleged they illegally profited on prior knowledge of Semitool Inc.’s 2009 sale to Applied Materials Inc.

The SEC alleged Angela Milliard wired money to her boyfriend’s brokerage account so she could illegally trade on details she learned while working as a legal assistant on Semitool’s then-secret deal. She also tipped her father, Kenneth Milliard, who also encouraged his sons to invest, as well.

Regulators say the Milliards sold their shares for illicit profits of more than $67,000 after the $360 million deal was announced. The SEC said Monday the Milliards agreed to settle the charges — without admitting or denying them — by paying more than $175,000, including interest and penalties.

“Angela Milliard exploited her access to confidential merger and acquisition information to illicitly enrich herself and her family,” said Marc Fagel, Director of the SEC’s San Francisco Regional Office. “As a member of a legal department entrusted with sensitive deal documents, she had a duty to safeguard that information, not trade on it.”

According to the SEC’s complaint filed in federal court in Montana, Angela Milliard first gained access to confidential deal information in October 2009, when she learned that Semitool and Applied Materials Inc. had entered into advanced merger negotiations. She learned that the tender offer would happen in mid-November at a nearly 30 percent premium over Semitool’s then-trading price.

The public announcement of the merger was made Nov. 17, 2009.

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