The insider-trading case starts in US

Goldman Sachs
Manhattan Mar 24: The biggest insider trading case kicks-off at the Federal court in Manhattan. The Securities Exchange Commission (SEC) has accused Raj Rajaratnam of making $45 million through information received from Goldman Sachs former board member Rajat Gupta. Yesterday the prime witness for the prosecutor was Goldman Sachs CEO Lloyd Blankfein. Under oath, Blankfein testified that Gupta had privileged information about Warren Buffet's $5 billion investment at the height of financial crisis. The case is expected to affect the public view of the $2 trillion hedge fund industry.

Raja Rajatratnam
Rajaratnam is the Sri Lankan born founder of Galleon Group, a New York-based hedge fund management which is believed to have $3 billion of assets. According to industry experts the on going trial has not affected the flow of fund or the confidence of current investors.

The prosecution has also provided the recorded conversation in July 2008 between Gupta and Rajaratnam as part of the evidence in the case.

Meanwhile Rajaratnam maintains his stance that he has done nothing wrong, he faces 14 counts of securities fraud and conspiracy. Since he was arrested in 2009,

It is speculated that prosecutors have nearly 90 hours of recorded calls. In these conversations Rajaratnam spoke with different people and received information which gave him an added advantage.

The weak link
The biggest concern for the prosecutors will be when Rajaratnam"s lawyers will try and paint Blankfein as a witness not to be trusted. Since, he heads the investment bank which was partially responsible for the financial crisis. And even now the gold plated bank faces numerous legal tug-of-war with the SEC and different government agencies.

As most of the jury comes from the working class, a loss of credibility of important witnesses will deliver a big blow. This will be perhaps biggest hurdle in this case.

OneIndia News

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