Former Va. Bank Exec Pleads Guilty to Insider Trading

January 28, 2011

A former southwest Virginia bank executive has pleaded guilty to participating in an insider trading scheme.

U.S. Attorney Timothy J. Heaphy says 58-year-old Gary A. Lawson of Lebanon pleaded guilty Thursday in federal court in Abingdon to conspiracy to defraud the federal government and money laundering.

Lawson formerly served as senior vice president and regional director at New Peoples Bank. Heaphy says Lawson admitted that he and others engaged in an insider trading scheme involving about $6 million in bank stock.

Lawson faces up 20 years in prison.

The bank's former president, Kenneth D. Hart of Honaker, pleaded guilty last October to participating in the scheme.

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