Online gambling chief charged with insider trading

Poker table Image copyright Getty Images

The chief executive of Amaya- the world's largest online gambling firm - has been charged in Canada with insider trading.

David Baazov was charged with using "privileged information" when trading Amaya shares between December 2013 and June 2014

Mr Baazov denied the charges and said he would "vigorously contest" them.

The alleged insider trading occurred while Amaya was being purchased by the Oldford Group for $4.3bn (£3bn).

Amaya - the operator of Pokerstars and European Poker Tour - said in a statement that the charges against its chief were "without merit" and that the company is cooperating with Quebec's market regulators - the AMF.

The body has also executed search warrants on a group of 13 individuals.

The charges include communicating privileged information and attempting to influence stock market prices.

In a statement Mr Baazov said, "These allegations are false and I intend to vigorously contest these accusations. While I am deeply disappointed with the AMF's decision, I am highly confident I will be found innocent of all charges."

Amaya's share price fell over 20%.

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