April 7, 2009: The then Sir Allen Stanford chokes back tears over being deprived of being named Forbes’ 405th richest person in the world as a result of the Ponzi charges (which he described as “baloney” and told a reporter using the dirty word, “If you say Ponzi to my face again, I will punch you in the mouth”). Read more »
It’s Going To Be Quite Some Time Before Legendary Investor Lenny Dykstra’s Lips Taste Sweet Freedom, Twizzlers Purchased Outside The Confines Of A Prison CanteenBy Bess Levin
Former New York Mets star and financial guru Lenny Dykstra was sentenced to three years in state prison on Monday, after a judge rejected a last-ditch effort to change his no contest plea and fight the charges. He had pleaded no contest to grand theft auto and filing a false financial statement in connection with a scheme to use somebody else’s paperwork to steal or lease several new cars, according to court records…In delivering the sentence, L.A. County Superior Court Judge Cynthia Ulfig said the effort to steal cars showed “sophistication, planning.” Her sentence came after Dykstra’s lawyer unsuccessfully urged the court to withdraw the no contest plea. But Ulfig said Dykstra was given ample due process and he had numerous opportunities to show evidence that he was innocent. After she rejected the plea withdrawal, Dykstra addressed the court, making a rambling and repetitive speech requesting leniency. ”Did I do something I’m not proud of? Yes,” Dykstra said. “Am I a criminal? No.” [LA Times, earlier]
Former UBS Director Sentenced To 33 Months In Jail Has Plans To Get Into The Culinary Industry Post-PrisonBy Bess Levin
Remember, back in April, when a bunch of UBS employees, were escorted out of the building and told not to come back, “pending an internal review into their conduct”? At the time we knew all four worked in operations and that they “were responsible for securities movements and payments,” and speculated that perhaps this was another RBS/Jim Glover-esque incident. Today, some other details have been filled in.
Reilly, 34, of Congers, N.Y., was sentenced today by Senior United States District Judge Warren W. Eginton in Bridgeport to 33 months of imprisonment, followed by three years of supervised release, for stealing more than $673,000 from UBS, his employer. According to court documents and statements made in court, from 1999 to April 2011, Reilly was employed at UBS in various positions. Most recently, Reilly worked at the Stamford office of UBS Securities, LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of the parent company. From November 2007 through January 2010, Reilly held the position of director within the settlements group and, as such, was responsible for overseeing various activities, including managing and maintaining suspense accounts and making sure that accurate payments were made to and by UBS on a daily basis. From approximately February 2009 to April 2011, Reilly was responsible for approximately 84 fraudulent wire transfers that caused more than $673,000 of company funds to be transferred to his own personal accounts…Reilly used his position as a director in the settlements group to cause subordinates to make false journal entries and fraudulent wire transfers without them knowing that the entries were false and that the transfers were going to Reilly’s personal accounts. Today, Reilly was ordered to pay restitution in the amount of $673,447.47.
According to the sentencing memo, Reilly stole from the good people at UBS to feed a gambling addiction that often found him sports-betting on the job (by his own estimation, at the height of his problem Reilly would spend “8 hours gambling and 2 hours working”) and sometimes on cruise ships. Read more »
The convicted insider trader, who was previously scheduled to report to prison for an 11 year sentence at the end of the month, was granted a few extra days of freedom. He’ll now have ’til December 5 to dance like nobody’s watching. [WSJ]
Maybe, you thought, Bernie Madoff wouldn’t like prison. Maybe, you thought, after a life of luxury, living in an 8X10 would cramp his style. Maybe, you thought, that he’d have trouble earning 14 cents an hour sweeping the floors, after spending several decades ‘earning’ millions making fake trades. Maybe, you thought, he wouldn’t take to an environment wherein taking your pants off means open season on your ass, after coming from a work environment where nobody blinked an eye when he regularly “dropped his trou in the office to ensure that the line of his shirt buttons was precisely vertical,” without the slightest threat of attack. Maybe, you thought, he’d be home sick. Maybe, you thought, he wouldn’t make any friends. Maybe, you thought, he wouldn’t get picked by any fraternities during rush. Well, you couldn’t be anymore wrong. Not only is Berns quickly adjusting and joining all sorts of groups, but he’s having the time of his life. Read more »
Thirty Months From Now, Danielle Chiesi Could Be Working You For Stock Tips While She Works On Your CuticlesBy Bess Levin
This afternoon, Danielle Chiesi will report to a West Virginia prison for a 30-month stay, for her role in the Galleon insider trading case, wherein she passed valuable tips on to Raj Rajaratnam after the tech execs she worked closely with passed her a few of their own. Chiesi will be bunking at Federal Prison Camp Alderson (former home of Martha Stewart, where “women hide sugar packets and crackers in their socks and conceal larger items like eggs under their shirts”), and while Bloomberg reports that the former beauty queen/Newscastle analyst won’t be living alongside ‘sadistic crack-selling lesbian rapists‘ (“It’s more college campus than Chained Heat, the 1983 exploitation film about women in jail” we’re assured), there may still be a few aspects of prison life about which D-Chi (“they give each other nicknames,” says one former resident) will be less than thrilled. Such as: Read more »
The defense had asked for 6.5 to 8 years on account of 1) the fact that, they say, Raj only made $7.4 million off his trades and 2) the “unique constellation of ailments ravaging his body” that would result in him dying behind bars if given a sentence “anywhere near” the prosecution’s request for 19.5 to 24 years. Read more »
At some point tomorrow, Raj Rajaratnam will be sentenced for the 14 counts of securities fraud and conspiracy he was found guilty on in May. The prosecution, which claims the Galleon founder netted “at least” $50 million in ill-gotten gains, has requested he go away for anywhere between 19 years and seven months to 24 1/2 years, while the defense, which argues Raj scored a mere $7.4 million, would prefer 6 1/2 to 8 years. To that end, the Rajaratnam team led by attorney John “How long are you going to suck [U.S. Attorney for the Southern District of New York] Preet’s teat” Dowd has 1) asked friends of Raj to send character letters to Judge Howell highlighting what a great guy he is and 2) made the bold statement that Rajaratnam is suffering from a “unique constellation of ailments ravaging his body” and that he will most certainly “perish if given a lengthy prison term.” To date, individuals vaguely and otherwise connected to the Galleon case have been sentenced to 2.5 years (Danielle Chiesi), 3 years (Emanuel Goffer), 4 years (lobster fiend) 10 years (Zvi Goffer). So! Read more »
Back in June, the lawyer for Winifred Jiau, expert network empress and accused insider trader, made a simple plea: “Put an end to this misguided prosecution,” Joanna Hendon said. “Send Ms. Jiau back to California, and to her dog.”
While the request might’ve played well with golden retriever lovers, the presiding judge didn’t care. He dragged things out another month, finding Jiau guilty over the summer and later on denying a request for acquittal or a new trial. Was Winifred the person you wanted to work with if you held an elastic view of securities laws and most certainly guilty of insider trading? Unquestionably: yes. Was she an individual who commanded sympathy, leniency or to whom you’d want to throw a bone? Those who benefited from her tips would be the first to tell you hell no.
In fact, she was bossy, she would cancel meetings at the last second, she would demand $300 gift certificates to the Cheesecake factory in one breath and a dozen Thanksgiving lobsters in the next, she would meet you for a pass off of material non-public information and tell you the shellfish you sent were Maine lobsters and she’d specifically request South African lobsters (even though she hadn’t) and then spit in your face and walk away and yes, sometimes you’d sit at your desk after she’d reamed you out over the phone for not giving her “the sugar” and fantasize about various ways you could kill her and make it look like an accident but having said all that: there’s a dog waiting for this lady and judge? She knows people who can make certain that these will be the first words you hear when you wake up and the last one’s you hear before you go to bed, for the rest of your life: Read more »
Back in May, Rengen Rajaratnam, little brother of Raj, made a simple request. For friends of the Galleon founder to send character letters to the judge in an effort to convince him to be lenient in sentencing. Rengen helpfully included some links on the proper formatting to use when drafting such missives and considering all the lives Raj had touched, it shouldn’t have proved too difficult a task. Was it so much to ask that people recall, for instance, the tears of joy he brought to their eyes when he paid an employee to allow herself to be tased? Or the midget gags? Apparently yes because his legal team has been forced to turn to plan B: breaking the news that Raj is dying of a disease the likes of which you can’t even imagine. Read more »
When one is serving a 150 year sentence for running a massive Ponzi scheme, he tends to find himself with time on his hands to think about things. Take Bernie Madoff, for example. He has a job in the joint (working in the commissary) and he gets in daily walks on the track but other than that, the hours are usually spent reflecting. His reflection time over the last couple years has lead to a few big conclusions and chief among them? That he’s been on the receiving end of a bum rap, in more ways than one, which he’s mentioned during several stops on his Legitimate Years Tour. In February, he griped to New York:
“Does anybody want to hear that I had a successful business and did all these wonderful things for the industry?” Bernie continued. “And got all these awards? And so did my family? I did all of this during the legitimate years. No. You don’t read any of that.”
Last month, he reminded New Yorker reporter Jeffrey Toobin that he “was worth a billion dollars before any of this nonsense started” but does anyone ever mention that? No they only care about the net worth accrued from his ill-gotten gains. On the same tour stop, he also suggested that he should be getting credit for his later work (the legitimacy of which is still an open-ended question in his mind), if only for the fact that its complexities could only be understood by the most sophisticated of investors (him).
Still, he speaks about his financial acumen with unmistakable pride. “The strategy that I was using for them, whether it was real or not, was not something that anyone would understand if you were not an expert,” he said. As he put it in an e-mail, “Fred was not [at] all stock market savvy and Saul was not really either. They were strictly Real Estate people. Although I explained the Strategy to them they were not sophisticated enough to evaluate it properly, nor were most of my other individual clients. They were not in a position to perform the necessary due diligence and did not have access to necessary financial info or records.”
Which leads us to Berns’ latest. In an interview with the Times he reasons that he got such a raw deal because the judge, like all of his feeble-brained haters, doesn’t understand how “the industry” works. Read more »