From lofty board room to lowly cell: Rajat Gupta begins prison term

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New York, June 17: Rajat Gupta, a one-time poster boy of Indians in America and former Goldman Sachs Director, on Tuesday began his two-year prison sentence after fighting a protracted legal battle to clear his name in one of the biggest insider trading schemes in US history.

Sixty-five-year-old Gupta, once regarded as among the most powerful and influential Indian-Americans on Wall Street, began serving his jail term at a minimum security satellite camp of the Federal Medical Center-Devens in Ayer, Massachusetts.

Incidentally Gupta's camp, which currently has 132 inmates, is next to the medical centre where his one-time friend and business associate hedge fund founder Raj Rajaratnam is serving his 11-year prison sentence for running the massive insider trading scheme.

Gupta was convicted for passing confidential information to Rajaratnam

Gupta was convicted in 2012 following a jury trial of passing confidential information about Goldman Sachs to Rajaratnam minutes after he learned about them at the board meetings. He was sentenced to two years in prison, ordered to pay USD 5 million in fine and a separate USD 6 million in restitution to Goldman Sachs.

Last year also, Gupta was also ordered to pay a hefty USD 13.9 million civil penalty and permanently barred from acting as an officer or director of a public company for spilling boardroom secrets. Gupta yesterday told a US court that he should not be required to pay the USD 13.9 million in civil penalties since he already has to pay over USD 11 million in criminal fines.

The IIT-Delhi and Harvard alumnus arrived at the prison facility and started the routine medical tests. The medical tests will take a day to be completed, following which Gupta will be lodged in the satellite camp. According to initial information available on the facility's website, Gupta has been described as a 65-year-old "Asian, male."

According to the camp's rules, Gupta will be able to receive family and friends on Saturdays, Sundays and federal holidays between 8:30 am to 3:00 pm while on Fridays between 2:30pm and 8:30pm. Normally, only five visitors, including children, are allowed to visit an inmate at any given time.

PTI

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