Gambler Walters denies wrongdoing over insider trading


DUBLIN, Ohio – Billy Walters, the high-profile Las Vegas gambler who along with Phil Mickelson is being investigated by federal authorities over possible insider trading, denied any wrongdoing in a statement released late Sunday.

“I am innocent of doing anything wrong. It’s that simple,” Walters said. “Those who know me best, know that it is preposterous to think that I would involve myself in insider trading.”

Two separate reports in the Wall Street Journal and New York Times revealed on Friday that Mickelson was the subject of an investigation by the FBI and Securities and Exchange Commission involving possible insider trading.

According to the WSJ report, authorities are “examining a series of well-timed trades” involving Mickelson, Walters and investor Carl Icahn.

Mickelson, Walters and Icahn have not been accused of any wrongdoing.

Billy Walters feature on "Golf in America"

“Yes, I have studied and invested in the stock market for many years and no one says anything when I lose money or when I am not successful. And certainly that’s happened, like it has to many of us,” Walters said in his statement. “But the bottom line here is, as I stated before, I’m not involved in any insider trading. I’ve never been involved in any insider trading.”

Callaway Golf, one of Mickelson’s longtime sponsors, also issued a statement on Sunday:

“The reported investigation does not involve Callaway and thus we have no comment on that matter,” the statement read. “However, we would like to note that we have had a long-standing partnership with Phil and value our relationship with him. He has always acted with the utmost professionalism and integrity in our dealings with him.  We continue to support him during this challenging time for him and his family.”

Mickelson is scheduled to participate this week’s FedEx St. Jude Classic and planned to play Pinehurst on Monday and Tuesday in his tune up for the U.S. Open.