Backdating options legal
Backdating option grants to, for example, just before an announcement that had a positive share price effect would be equivalent to granting the option in a prohibited period.
It is a phenomenon that will never rock the UK markets as it has the US ones.
Reyes is the first executive to go on trial, though others have settled cases with US financial regulator the Securities and Exchange Commission and paid not only fines, but millions of dollars of 'ill gotten gains' in some cases. The simple answer is that the practice has not taken hold because of the quality of UK regulation.