Bloomberg News

Ex-AllianceBernstein Worker Pleads Guilty in Computer Case

November 25, 2011

(Updates with attorney’s comment in fourth paragraph.)

Nov. 22 (Bloomberg) -- A former AllianceBernstein Holding LP employee accused of stealing software from the fund manager pleaded guilty to computer trespass in New York state court in Manhattan.

Peter Jan, 35, who was an application support specialist at the investment-management company, was accused in April of stealing software used to send and receive messages related to clients’ securities transactions. He was charged with computer trespass, grand larceny and unlawful duplication of computer- related materials.

He pleaded guilty today to one count of felony computer trespass as part of a deal with Manhattan District Attorney Cyrus Vance Jr.’s office. Jan will be able to withdraw his plea to the felony count and plead instead to a misdemeanor charge of unauthorized use of a computer if he completes 100 hours of community service and isn’t arrested during the next six months, his lawyer Jeremy Saland said. As a result, Jan will face no jail time and no probation, Saland said.

“Mr. Jan was not involved in any theft of data that compromised any aspect of AllianceBernstein’s clients,” Saland said in an interview after Jan’s plea. “This was really an unfortunate incident that was exacerbated because of AllianceBernstein being a major player in the financial community.”

FIX Downloads

Prosecutors said Jan gave notice to New York-based AllianceBernstein on March 8, 2010, and was supposed to leave the company 11 days later. On four occasions, prosecutors said, he downloaded software used by the company for FIX messages, a financial information exchange standard. Jan was fired on March 15, 2010.

John Meyers, a spokesman for AllianceBernstein, didn’t immediately return an e-mail message seeking comment on the plea.

The case is People vs. Jan, 01784/2011, New York State Supreme Court, New York County (Manhattan.)

--Editors: David E. Rovella, Stephen Farr

To contact the reporter on this story: Chris Dolmetsch in New York at cdolmetsch@bloomberg.net

To contact the editor responsible for this story: Michael Hytha at mhytha@bloomberg.net


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