He requested their help last week and even included some links on the proper formatting to use when drafting missives in an attempt to convince a judge to be lenient in sentencing.
From: Rengan Rajaratnam
Sent: Tuesday, May 18, 2011
I want to thank you for your support. Your calls, emails, texts, and inquiries are constant reminders that through this dark, tragic time, Raj and the family are not alone.
As we prepare for the appeals process, we need your help and I am I only sending this letter to a handful of people. The sentencing phase is coming up relatively quickly and the federal guidelines are calling for 15 to 19 years in jail. The guidelines are harder and less flexible than many prison sentences for violent and predatory offenders. This is simply unfair, and we are praying for leniency from the judge while we prepare for the appeal.
In the meantime, on behalf of Raj and the family, I would like to enlist your support one last time. Positive character letters from family, friends, and colleagues that know Raj well can play a pivotal role in helping persuade the Hon. Judge Holwell to be fair, and lenient during Raj’s sentencing.
If you can find it in your hearts to write a personal letter to Judge Holwell describing your relationship with Raj; when and how you met; as well as illustrate some of the positive experiences you’ve had with him, it would be of immense service to Raj and our family. The longer you can state you have known Raj, clearly the better.
The goal is to appeal to Judge Howell, by informing him that Raj is a loving human being with deep friendships and ties to the community. That Raj is a person of good character, a positive member of society who is deserving of the court’s leniency.
As many of you may be aware, Raj has donated significant amounts of money to charity in excess of $30 MM in the last 5 years alone. If you need specifics, please call me.
It is important that the letter come from you, and paints Raj in a positive light. Since time is of the essence, it would be great if you could send the letters to me before the end of the week or the early part of next week. My address is:
The format of the actual letter is important, and there are several examples on the web. I have included one link that I found helpful on some guidelines on how to properly write a character reference.
The actual letter should be addressed to the following Judge, and include Raj’s case information in the subject heading:
(FOR ACTUAL LETTER):
Hon. Richard J Holwell
United States District Judge
United States District Court
Southern District of New York
500 Pearl Street
New York, NY 10007
Re: United States v. Raj Rajaratnam 09 Cr. 1184 (RJH)
Please show your name and address at the top right hand corner along with your telephone number.
Please call me at [redacted] if you have any questions on the process.
Thanks again for your help.