back to article Stock trader gets two years in prison for pumping up with Fitbit

A US stock trader has been sentenced to two years in prison for running a pump and dump operation involving wearables vendor Fitbit, albeit one that earned him only a few thousand dollars. Robert Walter Murray was given the federal prison term after pleading guilty to one count of securities fraud. He had faced a maximum of 20 …

  1. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Always aim for the moon, even if you miss, you'll land in jail.

  2. Notas Badoff

    The power to cloud men's minds

    Some people are just more susceptible.

    There was a SF short story about a nebula that just happens to drift into the Solar System, and the composition of the cloud just happens to dramatically lower human intelligence. As the lights begin to go out, the last few bright sparks try to determine just how big is the cloud, thus how long the dark ages will be. They fail...

    Not "The Black Cloud". And not "The Shadow". I just don't know why I can't bring the title to mind... er...

    1. Dodgy Geezer Silver badge

      Re: The power to cloud men's minds

      Reading today's press - I don't think that was just a story.....

    2. G2

      Re: The power to cloud men's minds

      try reading the Helliconia trilogy by Brian Aldiss... it's set in a binary star system that causes extremely long seasons that last for centuries. The Winter book sounds similar to your description but in Aldiss' book it's the extremely long Great Winter that affects the human civilization, not a nebula.

      (with double "L"s!)

    3. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: The power to cloud men's minds

      "Not "The Black Cloud". And not "The Shadow". I just don't know why I can't bring the title to mind... er..."

      The Trump Nebula?

  3. bex

    Yet Trumps buddy...

    Who dumped $31.3m is steel stocks the day before the Orange ones idiotic tariff announcement will get no penalty.

    1. veti Silver badge

      Re: Yet Trumps buddy...

      The "dumping" happened at least a week before the announcement - we don't know exactly when, but that's when the sale was made public.

      If you're going to smear people, at least get the facts right.

      And a brief look at the company's stock price (here) shows that it was already in decline for some weeks before then, so selling doesn't look all that suspicious. Even after the announcement, the hit to the stock was hardly crushing.

      I'm not saying it was all aboveboard and there's nothing to see here. I'm saying this is one way fake news spreads: claims get exaggerated and repeated by people who can't be bothered to check the facts, because they "feel" true.

      1. Dodgy Geezer Silver badge

        Re: Yet Trumps buddy...

        I don't think you understand. If a poster mentions the word 'Trump', it is correct to accuse him (or his friends) of anything nasty. Because we have all been told to hate him, and we need to keep finding good reasons for this every day.

        Besides, he's the sort of person who would do nasty things. So, if he didn't actually do them, that just proves that he's too stupid to think of them - because he'd certainly do them if he thought of them....

    2. robidy

      Re: Yet Trumps buddy...

      Your post has one assume Trump plans ahead. Wouldn't want to be defending that claim.

  4. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Only Goldman Sachs are allowed to pump and dump

    For the benefit of the 1%

  5. John Smith 19 Gold badge

    Meanwile its BAU for HFT firms with their automated man in the middle attacks.

    His real crime was showing how easy it was to fool the SEC into thinking he was part of the company.

    You can get away with anything if you don't make a federal regulator look stupid*

    *Yes, even the FCC. Sweet Pai makes himself look stupid. The FCC doesn't look stupid. The rules that allow someone like him to be parachuted into the top spot make the Federal Government look stupid in turn.

    1. Alan Brown Silver badge

      Re: Meanwile its BAU for HFT firms with their automated man in the middle attacks.

      "The rules that allow someone like him to be parachuted into the top spot"

      Rule #1 with all US federal agencies: The "Director" is a political appointment. The REAL director is the "Deputy Director"

  6. Aristotles slow and dimwitted horse Silver badge


    Any chance we now stop calling Shrekli by his sobriquet of "Pharma bro" please? In know he gave it to himself to pump his own ego, but basically the guy is a sad twat who is now entirely caught in a web of his own making. I just get the feeling that continuing to use this term when referencing him is pandering to his own over inflated sense of worth whereas I think most of us would be happy if he just disappeared up his own rear end until the end of time.

    If we can't dispense with it, can we at least apply another more fitting? I'd like to start the bidding with "jailed fuckstick".

    1. Chrissy

      Re: Ugh...

      Pretty young boy like that?.....He's not the f+++stick.

    2. Swarthy Silver badge

      Re: Ugh...

      I always read "bro" as "a sad twat who is now entirely caught in a web of his own making" (well, either that or "Self-centered Douche Bag"), so "Pharma Bro" seems entirely accurate.

  7. TrumpSlurp the Troll Silver badge

    Darwin Award?

    All the effort to set up and commit fraud resulting in a very small profit?

    There should be some award for the most futile crime each year. This would be a contender in the financial sector.

    1. David 132 Silver badge

      Re: Darwin Award?

      Yeah, in the spectrum of criminality this seems to be on a par with "hand-forging 1p pieces" in terms of effort:risk:reward ratio (as in "I've spent WEEKS on it, but am proud to say I now have a perfect facsimile of a 1penny piece, so good that it'll fool anyone, muhahahaha".)

      Any other examples of ill-conceived crime?

  8. gnarlymarley Bronze badge

    Careful! US Congress does not like competition. Seems to be only the politicians and SEC heads that can get way with this kind of stuff.

  9. steviebuk Silver badge

    Blue Horseshoe...

    ...loves Anacott steel.

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