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U .S. District Judge Charles Breyer threw out much of an insider trading case last week, ruling that the government cannot prosecute a corporate outsider tipped off through his membership in an exclusive club.

Breyer concluded that Keith J. Kim, the former chief executive officer of potato chip maker Granny Goose Foods Inc., will not have to face two counts of securities fraud since he did not have a fiduciary-like relationship with the source of the information.

Although Breyer alluded that in this case a wrong would go unpunished, he said Kim cannot, as a matter of law, be the guilty party.

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