Quimbee logo
DMCA.com Protection Status
From our private database of 18,800+ case briefs...

United States v. O'Hagan

United States Supreme Court
521 U.S. 642 (1997)



James O’Hagan (defendant) was a partner in the law firm that represented Grand Metropolitan PLC in its tender offer of Pillsbury Company (Pillsbury) common stock. The possibility of the tender offer was confidential and not public until the offer was formally made by Grand Met. However, during the time when the potential tender offer was still confidential and nonpublic, O’Hagan used the inside information he received through his firm to purchase call options and general stock in Pillsbury. Subsequently, after the information of the tender offer became public, Pillsbury stock skyrocketed and O’Hagan sold his shares, making a profit of over $4 million. The Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) initiated an investigation into O’Hagan’s transactions and brought charges against O’Hagan for violating § 10(b) and § 14(e) of the Securities Exchange Act. The trial jury convicted O’Hagan, but the United States Court of Appeals for the Eighth Circuit reversed on the grounds that violation of SEC Rule 10b-5 cannot be grounded in the misappropriation theory of insider trading. The United States Supreme Court granted certiorari.

Rule of Law


Holding and Reasoning (Ginsburg, J.)

Concurrence/Dissent (Thomas, J.)

Concurrence/Dissent (Scalia, J.)

What to do next…

  1. Unlock this case brief with a free (no-commitment) trial membership of Quimbee.

    You’ll be in good company: Quimbee is one of the most widely used and trusted sites for law students, serving more than 499,000 law students since 2011. Some law schools—such as Yale, Vanderbilt, Berkeley, and the University of Illinois—even subscribe directly to Quimbee for all their law students. Read our student testimonials.

  2. Learn more about Quimbee’s unique (and proven) approach to achieving great grades at law school.

    Quimbee is a company hell-bent on one thing: helping you get an “A” in every course you take in law school, so you can graduate at the top of your class and get a high-paying law job. We’re not just a study aid for law students; we’re the study aid for law students. Read more about Quimbee.

Here's why 499,000 law students have relied on our case briefs:

  • Written by law professors and practitioners, not other law students. 18,800 briefs, keyed to 985 casebooks. Top-notch customer support.
  • The right amount of information, includes the facts, issues, rule of law, holding and reasoning, and any concurrences and dissents.
  • Access in your classes, works on your mobile and tablet. Massive library of related video lessons and high quality multiple-choice questions.
  • Easy to use, uniform format for every case brief. Written in plain English, not in legalese. Our briefs summarize and simplify; they don’t just repeat the court’s language.

Questions & Answers

Have a question about this case?

Sign up for a free 7-day trial and ask it

Sign up for a FREE 7-day trial