Representative Chris Collins (R-NY) has resigned his seat in the US House of Representatives and is to plead guilty this afternoon to insider trading charges, the Washington Post reports.
It adds that Collins allegedly tipped off his son about confidential information he learned as a member of the board and largest shareholder of the Australian biotechnology firm Innate Immunotherapeutics, enabling him and others to avoid a loss totaling more than $700,000. According to the Post, Collins was at a congressional picnic when he learned that a drug trial Innate was conducting had failed, which led him to contact his son, who held millions of shares in the company.
"Collins, who, by virtue of his office, helps write the laws of this country, acted as if the law did not apply to him," US Attorney Geoffrey Berman said, according to Vox, following Collins's 2018 arrest. Vox adds that Collins had urged other lawmakers to invest in the company.
The Post notes that it is unclear whether Collins plans to plead guilty to all or just some of the charges against him, which include securities and wire fraud as well as lying to the Federal Bureau of Investigations. Collins's son and another family member are also to plead guilty later this week, it adds.