US Govt seeks more time to file info or indictment against Australian trader accused of spoofing

The Government and defense counsel refer to the complexity of the case targeting Jiongsheng (“Jim”) Zhao.

The United States Government has asked for an extension of time within which to file an information or indictment against Jiongsheng (“Jim”) Zhao, an Australian trader accused of spoofing. In a filing with the Illinois Northern District Court, the US Government requests a 45-day extension of time, up to and including January 20, 2019, to do so.

The Government and defense counsel refer to the complexity of the case and argue that the attorneys for the Government and the defendant need reasonable time to prepare. The Government and defense counsel also continue to engage in discussions concerning potential pretrial resolution of the proceeding.

On January 29, 2018, Zhao was arrested by the Australian Federal Police and remanded into custody pending extradition. On November 19, 2018, after his extradition to the United States, Zhao made an initial appearance before Magistrate Judge Young B. Kim. Zhao was initially held in custody pending a detention hearing, but was released on conditions on November 26, 2018.

Let’s recall that in January this year, the United States Department of Justice charged Jiongsheng (“Jim”) Zhao, of Australia, in a criminal complaint with wire fraud, commodities fraud, making false statements to the CME, and spoofing offenses when he was a trader at a proprietary trading firm located in Sydney, Australia. According to the complaint, data analysis identified hundreds of instances of spoofing by Zhao on the CME between approximately July 2012 and March 2016. Additionally, the complaint alleges that Zhao made false written statements to the CME after being confronted with allegations of his disruptive trading practices.

Zhao is alleged to have engaged in the deceptive pattern approximately 2,300 times, which included 3,100 discrete instances of spoofing (bidding or offering with the intent to cancel the bid or offer before execution).

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