US officials have linked Steven Cohen, founder of SAC Capital, one of Wall Street’s most powerful hedge funds, to an insider-trading scheme that prosecutors called the most lucrative case of its kind.

US prosecutors charged Mathew Martoma, a former portfolio manager at CR Intrinsic, a SAC Capital fund, with trading shares in two pharmaceuticals companies after obtaining secret information about a clinical drug trial. US authorities alleged that Mr Martoma recommended trading shares in Elan and Wyeth to the “hedge fund owner”, who people familiar with the matter confirm was Mr Cohen.