Hedge Funds

Leon Cooperman repeats that SEC insider trading charges are 'without merit'

Lee Cooperman
Katie Kramer | CNBC

Omega Advisors' Leon Cooperman rebuffed allegations of insider trading, telling CNBC's "Halftime Report" on Wednesday that he and his attorneys believe the charges to be baseless.

The billionaire hedge fund manager read a statement from his attorneys, which said, "Mr. Cooperman did nothing wrong."

Last year, the Securities and Exchange Commission accused Cooperman of buying into Atlas Pipeline Partners ahead of a deal, using his status as one of its largest shareholders to acquire nonpublic information about an upcoming transaction.

Since the SEC filed its civil complaint, Cooperman and Omega Advisors have been adamant about vigorously defending themselves, insisting that the charges are "without merit." The allegations initially caused his hedge funds assets to shrink by more than half.

Cooperman previously told CNBC he was "truly surprised at the destructive power the SEC has."

"This will cost me well over ($100 million) before it's over for no reason because, in the end, the facts will make it clear no improper trading was done," he said.

Cooperman said Wednesday that his two goals when the charges were first brought were to continue delivering on his investors' performance expectations and to prove that the charges are without merit.

"The SEC, in my opinion, has overreacted and we're anxious to go to court," he said.

Omega Advisors, which managed $3.6 billion in assets as of March 31, is up more than 6 percent so far this year, Cooperman said.