Millennium Post

US court rejects insider trader Martoma’s plea for new trial

A bid for acquittal and fresh trial filed by NRI portfolio manager Mathew Martoma, convicted for his role in the most lucrative insider trading scheme in US history, has been denied by a court which ruled that evidence ‘overwhelmingly’ shows he is guilty. He will be sentenced on the scheduled date of September 8 after US District Judge Paul Gardephe denied his motion for a judgement of acquittal and a new trial.

Martoma was convicted in February for being ‘the central figure’ in the fraud. US Attorney for the Southern District of New York Preet Bharara has asked the court to order Martoma to forfeit his 2008 bonus totalling $9.4 million and pay a separate fine to reflect the ‘serious offense’ committed by him.

Gardephe said Martoma offered no persuasive argument in the trial against the ‘overwhelming circumstantial evidence’ demonstrating that he traded on the securities of pharma companies Elan and Wyeth for his hedge fund SAC Capital after getting confidential information from two doctors about an Alzheimer’s disease drug trial.

The judge said Martoma and SAC Capital were able to make profits and avoid losses of $275 million due to inside info he had ‘wrongfuly’ obtained from the doctors while countless other investors, who were were not privy to this info, had to bear the full brunt’ of the Elan and Wyeth stock price decline . ‘The assertion that there are no victims of Martoma’s crimes is as astounding as it is meritless,’ the judge said.

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