GOP Rep. Chris Collins Resigns Before Pleading Guilty to Insider Trading

Rep. Chris Collins (Mark Makela/Reuters)

Republican congressman Chris Collins, one of the first members of Congress to throw his support behind President Trump, reportedly resigned his congressional seat Monday a day before he is expected to plead guilty to insider-trading charges he had previously vowed to fight.

Collins, 69, is accused of working with his son, Cameron Collins, to avoid more than $700,000 in losses using confidential information about the Australian company Innate Immunotherapeutics. Collins, who was the company’s biggest investor and sat on its board, allegedly received private corporate information regarding a drug trial while at a White House congressional picnic, and contacted his son with the information.

The fourth-term congressman called the charges “meritless” and narrowly won reelection in his Buffalo-area district last year despite his indictment on charges of conspiracy, securities fraud, wire fraud, and lying to FBI agents regarding the case.

The younger Collins and another individual, Stephen Zarsky, who face the same charges, will also change their pleas to guilty this week, according to court documents filed in federal court in Manhattan.

Editor’s Note: This piece has been amended since its initial posting to reflect Collins’s resignation.

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