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Ex-SanDisk Executive Avoids Prison in Insider Case

Former SanDisk Corp. executive Donald Barnetson was sentenced to probation for passing nonpublic information to hedge fund consultant John Kinnucan, U.S. prosecutors said.

Barnetson, 39, was sentenced today in federal court in New York to one year of probation and was also ordered to pay a $4,000 fine, said Jerika Richardson, a spokeswoman for U.S. Attorney Preet Bharara in Manhattan.

The former marketing director for Milpitas, California-based SanDisk, who was cooperating with the government, pleaded guilty to one count of conspiracy to commit securities and wire fraud in February 2012. He faced as long as five years in prison at his sentencing today before U.S. District Judge Kimba Wood.

Kinnucan, who refused to cooperate in an insider-trading probe, pleaded guilty to one count of conspiracy and two counts of securities fraud and was sentenced in January to four years and three months in prison. Prosecutors said Kinnucan, the founder of Broadband Research LLC, used financial incentives and expensive meals to curry favor with corporate insiders, including Barnetson, and gain access to non-public information.

The case is U.S. v. Barnetson, 1:12-cr-00157, U.S. District Court, Southern District of New York (Manhattan).

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