A former biotech company patent agent and his brother have reportedly entered guilty pleas to charges of providing insider tips to others in a conspiracy to violate securities fraud laws. According to a news source, when Aaron Scalia was employed by Sequenom, Inc., he allegedly told his brother Stephen that the company was about to announce that data on its prenatal Down syndrome test was unreliable and later told him that the company planned to buy Exact Sciences.

In each case, the information was purportedly provided with the knowledge that it “would be used to purchase stocks or stock options.” Stephen apparently passed the knowledge to a college friend whose uncle then made a gross profit of $600,000 by using the inside information in stock trades. Sentencing before a federal court in California is reportedly scheduled for April 29, 2011.