Dallas Mavericks basketball team owner Mark Cuban – who appeared on season five of Dancing with the Stars – has been charged with insider trading by the Securities and Exchange Commission.
Cuban, 50, was voted off Dancing after a poor samba performance with partner Kym Johnson last year. Now he faces real-life trouble for allegedly selling shares of an Internet company days before an announcement that the company would seek financing in 2004, according to the Wall Street Journal.
The SEC claims Cuban avoided more than $750,000 in losses.
In a statement on his blog, Cuban writes, “I wish I could say more, but I will have to leave it to this, and let the judicial process do its job.” The statement goes on to say the government’s insider trading allegation “has no merit and is a product of gross abuse of prosecutorial discretion.”
Cuban is not the first Dancing contestant to run afoul of financial laws: In October, race car driver Helio Castroneves pleaded not guilty in a Florida courtroom to charges that he evaded U.S. taxes on more than $5 million in income. He was released on $10 million bail.
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• 2007: Mark joins the cast of DWTS!
• 2004: Martha Stewart sentenced to five months in prison for insider trading