Julian Rifat
Julian Rifat is accused of using insider information to make lucrative tradesReuters

Julian Rifat, a former hedge fund trader who appeared at Southwark Crown Court answering eight counts of insider trading, will return to court in May.

Rifat, formerly an execution trader at Moore Capital Management, remains on unconditional bail until the next hearing, when he is expected to enter a plea.

He was originally arrested back in 2010 as part of the Financial Conduct Authority's Operation Tabernula, which is thought to be the UK's largest investigation into inside trading.

The FCA has said it takes a long time to bring complex cases.

The 44-year-old is thought to have made deals using illegal tips in companies including Barclays and Volkswagen.

What is inside trading?

Inside trading occurs when an investor attempts to execute a transaction on the basis of market-moving, non-public information they have received as part of their role.

Source: Financial Conduct Authority

The Financial Conduct Authority alleges Rifat obtained sensitive information about companies as part of his role at Moore Capital in London before passing the information to an purported accomplice so that the pair could then earn considerable profits.

Since 2009 there have been 23 convictions for insider dealing and last year the FCA arrested another 15 suspects.

Of the other men arrested in Operation Tabernula, one pleaded guilty and is serving a two-year jail sentence.

Two others pleaded not guilty at a December court hearing, including Graeme Shelley, who is alleged to be Rifat's co-conspirator.

The others charged in the probe include Deutsche Bank managing director Martyn Dodgson; Iraj Parvizi, a former director at Aria Capital; Grant Harrison, a former managing director at Altium Capital; and Paul Milsom, a former equities trader at Legal & General.