Earlier this morning, Raj Rajaratnam’s 7-man legal team led by attorney John Down gave its final remarks in the insider trading case. While the Galleon founder is, of course, innocent until prove guilty, much of the evidence brought by the prosecution has made him look prettay prettay prettay bad, including but not limited to recordings of Raj complimenting Danielle Chiesi on how she “played” a tech exec into giving her material non-public information and one of him telling a friend he knew to buy shares of a company because “one of our guys is on the board,” as well as testimony from a former McKinsey exec that Raj paid him $1 million for his tip about AMD’s acquisition of ATI and the previously undisclosed fact that the defense’s big witness, Richard Schutte, was gifted with a $15 million investment in his hedge fund by the Rajaratnam family two weeks prior to speaking glowingly of Raj. How did Dowd explain all that in his wrap-up? It’s pretty simple, really. Everyone who said something that suggested his client was guilty is a liar.
Dowd said former McKinsey & Co. consultant Anil Kumar “was a tax cheat and he admitted he was a tax cheat.” “You know you can’t trust Anil Kumar…This case is just make-believe,” Mr. Dowd said.
Mr. Dowd, after discussing Mr. Kumar, turned to Adam Smith, a former Galleon Group portfolio manager who has also pleaded guilty in connection with tips he allegedly provided Mr. Rajaratnam. Mr. Smith testified at the trial that he gave his boss nonpublic information he received from a Morgan Stanley investment banker, and also told jurors that Mr. Rajaratnam made efforts to hide insider trading. The defense later called witnesses who testified that Mr. Smith had denied insider trading to Mr. Rajaratnam’s lawyers last year and said the government had pressured him to plead guilty to providing confidential information he hadn’t given. “Smith has changed his story so many times he doesn’t know if he’s coming or going,” Mr. Dowd said. “You can’t trust Smith any more than you can trust Kumar. You know that Smith and Kumar are lying because the evidence proves they’re lying.”
Dowd did not say whether or not the wiretaps lied, but it would follow.