Senate Intelligence Chairman Richard Burr (R-N.C.) was hit with a federal lawsuit Monday over his sell-off of shares before the market crashed over concerns about the novel coronavirus pandemic.
Wyndham Hotels and Resorts shareholder Alan Jacobson alleges “acts of securities fraud committed by [Burr]” and “abuse of his powers as a U.S. Senator” when he sold his $150,000 stake in the business. Burr strongly denies any wrongdoing and asked the Senate Ethics Committee Friday to review the sell-offs.
Burr had been receiving daily coronavirus updates from the intelligence community in his role as committee chairman, per a Feb. 27 report by Reuters. After writing a Feb. 7 Fox News op-edthat said the U.S. is “better prepared than ever before” to face public health threats such as COVID-19, he sold between $628,000 and $1.72 million in stocks on Feb. 13, ProPublica reported.