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SAC founder raising funds by selling art

Oct. 14, 2013 at 4:16 PM   |   Comments

NEW YORK, Oct. 14 (UPI) -- Beleaguered SAC Capital Advisors founder Steven Cohen has engaged New York auction house Sotheby's to sell major art works, sources told The New York Times.

Cohen, who is worth about $9 billion, has an extensive art collection and frequently buys and sells works by world famous artists, the Times reported Monday.

But an upcoming sale that includes two 1963 paintings by Andy Warhol and one by abstract painter Gerhard Richter is being conducted while legal fees mount up for the hedge fund founder whose firm the focus of an extensive insider trading investigation.

Eleven of the firm's former employees have been implicated in recent insider trading cases with six of them pleading guilty to insider trading while at SAC.

Two of the former employees, Michael Steinberg and Mathew Martoma are scheduled to go on trial. Steinberg's trial is scheduled to begin in November while Martoma's trial starts in January, the Times said.

Steinberg has been charged with taking advantage of confidential information in trading Dell and Nvidia stock. Martoma has been accused of using drug trial information that had not been made public to avoid $276 million in losses the firm would otherwise have endured.

SAC has already settled two cases with the Securities and Exchange Commission for $616 million.

The firm is currently negotiating a settlement to avoid a trial on current charges. The Times said the firm is expected to pay $2 billion to settle the latest charges.

The Warhol paintings include a portrait of actress Elizabeth Taylor that is expected to sell for up to $30 million. The other, called "5 Deaths on Turquoise (Turquoise Disaster)," is expected to sell for as much as $10 million, the Times said.

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