Bowling Green car dealer, Gary Force, has agreed to pay $4.1 million to settle civil insider trading charges. The Securities and Exchange Commission says Force made more than $1.5 million trading stocks based on illegal tips. The allegations against 64-year-old Force were outlined in civil papers filed Wednesday in U.S. District Court in New York City. The SEC says the case stems from a broad insider trading scheme launched on the internet involving more than 20 people, several of whom were arrested in Bowling Green in March of 2000.
Force was accused of receiving the tips from his broker, Chad Conner, who worked at Morgan Keegan in Bowling Green at the time. Conner allegedly received the inside information from James Cooper, also of Bowling Green. Cooper pleaded guilty to his part in the operation. Conner was convicted of insider trading conspiracy and commercial bribery.
Force is out of town, but late today his wife issued a statement, in which he "neither admits nor denies the allegations," and says he is "glad to have the matter behind him."