Ishan Wahi must report to the Fort Dix Federal Correctional Institution in New Jersey by June 21 in order to serve his sentence.
Ishan Wahi, a former product manager at Coinbase Global who was charged with insider trading, has been given a 24-month prison term by a federal judge.
At a hearing on May 9 in the Southern District of New York’s United States District Court, Judge Loretta Preska sentenced Wahi to two years in prison for his involvement in using confidential data he acquired while employed at Coinbase to make up to $1.5 million in profit from new token listings.
In order to serve his term in the Fort Dix Federal Correctional Institution in New Jersey, Preska ordered Wahi to surrender himself by June 21 at 2:00 PM ET. He will have two years of concurrent supervised release following his sentence in jail for each offence.
The judge told Wahi, “You spoke very nicely, you said all the right things.” “I hope you can make up to your parents for this.”
The former Coinbase employee is accused of using confidential data he got from Coinbase, along with his brother Nikhil Wahi and associate Sameer Ramani, to make over $1 million in profit off new coin listings. Ishan and Nikhil were arrested by U.S. authorities in July 2022 as they tried to flee the country and travel to India.
Ishan Wahi’s counsel argued that the judge should take into account his immigration status in the country while determining his sentence because it was a non-violent offense and he had “zero criminal history” before his arrest. Wahi’s mother and other family members as well as friends attended the court hearing in person.
The attorney stated, “I submit that there is no need for this court to impose additional punishment.” He is no longer employed. His reputation has been damaged. Both here in the United States and in India, he faces an enormous amount of negative publicity.
The former Coinbase product manager also addressed the judge directly, apologizing for his behaviour and admitting that he had “made a huge mistake.” Contrary to his brother Nikhil and Ramani, the prosecution claimed that Ishan was the most accountable for the insider trading scam because he oversaw it:
“This was not a one-off blunder; it occurred over a ten-month period […] It was like being able to read the newspaper a day in advance to have access to the kind of knowledge that this defendant did.
Ishan reportedly agreed to a sentence of between 36 and 47 months in prison when the brothers pleaded enrollment to criminal insider trading allegations. In September 2022, Nikhil pleaded admission to charges of conspiring to commit wire fraud, and he was later given a 10-month prison term. Ramani was still at large at the time of publishing.
Ishan has also come under fire from the US Securities and Exchange Commission in a separate investigation into alleged securities law violations. By April 3, the SEC reported that it had come to “an agreement in principle” with the former Coinbase product manager.