Intel CEO Brian Krzanich

  • Institutional investors are talking to plaintiffs lawyers about potentially filing suit against Intel over CEO Brian Krzanich’s massive stock sale in November.
  • Krzanich gained some $24 million by selling all the shares and options he was allowed to sell under a plan he put in place only the month before. His plan was put in place months after Intel was informed of a major security vulnerability in its chips.
  • There’s a good chance the stock sale will draw the attention of the Securities and Exchange Commission and could lead to an internal investigation by Intel’s board, legal experts said.

Intel CEO Brian Krzanich’s massive stock sale last fall — which came as the company was privately trying to contend with a major security vulnerability in its chips — could spark a mess of legal trouble for the company.

Institutional investors are already consulting with lawyers about filing a shareholder suit against the company related to the stock sale, according to a person familiar with the talks. Meanwhile, Intel could also contend with an inquiry by the Securities and Exchange Commission, legal experts said.

“I certainly think it would be intriguing to the SEC and theoretically to the US Attorney’s office,” said Joshua Robbins, a white-collar defense attorney at Greenberg Gross and a former federal prosecutor. If the SEC does launch an inquiry, he continued, “it’s going to want to know what did [Krzanich] know and when did he know it.”

The SEC declined to say whether it is investigating Krzanich’s stock sale. An Intel representative told Business Insider last week that Krzanich’s stock sale was “unrelated” to the high-profile security vulnerability which affects chips made by Intel as well as those of rival chipmakers AMD and ARM. But the Intel spokesperson declined on Monday to comment any further on the matter, including whether Read More Here