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Short-Seller Charged with Lying about ADS Acquisition

U.S. securities regulators said on Thursday they filed a settled complaint against a Wall Street trader accused of intentionally spreading false rumors about the planned acquisition of Alliance Data Systems while selling the stock short.

Paul Berliner, formerly associated with Schottenfeld Group, agreed to settle the civil case without admitting or denying the allegations, the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission said in a statement.

The SEC said Berliner would disgorge $26,129 in profits and interest, and pay a maximum penalty of $130,000.

(See the full discussion about Berliner and the SEC case in the CNBC video at left.)

Blackstone Group agreed last year to buy Alliance for $6.76 billion, but the deal collapsed this month.

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