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‘Gupta threw away his duties’

Former Goldman Sachs director Rajat Gupta ‘threw away his duties’ when he passed confidential company information to hedge fund founder Raj Rajaratnam, a prosecutor told a US court, even as defence argued that the Indian American was not an insider trader and ‘does not belong in this courtroom’.

The trial of Gupta, one of the most high profile Wall Street executives to be charged with insider trading, began in US District Court, Southern District of New York on Monday.

In his opening remarks to the 12 member jury, assistant US Attorney Reed Brodsky said Gupta ‘threw away his duties and responsibilities and broke the law,’ by sharing insider tips with Rajaratnam, who is currently serving an 11 year prison sentence on insider trading charges.

The case of illegal insider trading ‘is about this man,’ Brodsky said facing the jury and pointing his hand toward Gupta ‘and how he violated his duties and abused his position as a corporate insider’.

Gupta, flanked by his defence team sat stoically, staring at Brodsky as he accused him of cheating shareholders and ‘periodically’ passing secret information to Rajaratnam.

Hitting back at the prosecution, Gupta’s lawyer Gary Naftalis said in his opening remarks to the jury that his client is ‘innocent’ and the charges and allegations are ‘false’. ‘He is not an insider trader. He has not cheated anybody. He does not belong in the courtroom. He is an honourable man with an extraordinary record of honesty and integrity,’ Naftalis said.
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