Stanislav Shpigelman, the ex-Merrill Lynch analyst sentenced to 37 months in prison for tipping off former Goldman Sachs employees Eugene “Twinkletoes” Plotkin and David Pajcin to news of six pending mergers, said in papers made public last week that his error in judgment resulted from “false promises, deception, intimidation and flattery.” According to the briefing by Shpigelman’s lawyer, Mary Mulligan, his involvement was “not [driven by] the receipt of large sums of money,” which she apparently sees as grounds for seeking leniency.
According to Bloomberg, Shpigelman met Plotkin when he was 19 and studying abroad, introduced by his sister, a colleague of Plotkin at Goldman. Although Plotkin failed in his pledge to help Shpigelman obtain a Goldman internship for that summer, the two kept in touch. The young pup started working at Merrill (an obvious blow to the friendship) in the summer of 2004, and reunited with Plotkin during a meeting at Spa 88, a bathhouse downtown that Urban Daddy has endorsed and that we’ve been unable to separate from the mental image of our grandfathers sitting in the steam room of our local JCC. Moving on! It was at 88 that Plotkin ultimately convinced Shpigelman to get involved in the insider scheme and to “try the grape leaves, they’re a delicacy.”
By Mulligan’s account,
“Plotkin and Pagcin were older, more experienced industry veterans who insinuated their way into Mr. Shpigelman's life by promising the sort of career mentorship that Mr. Shpigelman so desired.”
Then the “gentleman of a certain age” lost money on a deal, and “the combination of the intimidation brought to bear by Plotkin and Pajcin, and Mr. Shpigelman's desire to stay in Plotkin's and Pajcin's good graces led him to agree to provide them with additional information,'' Mulligan wrote. ``Plotkin and Pajcin then traded on this new information.''
Assistant U.S. Attorney Benjamin Lawsky, however, doesn’t buy the sob story and has argued that “Mr. Shpigelman did this for the oldest reason in the book -- greed -- and his desire to make bundles and bundles of money.” While we think most of the defense seems plausible, we’re not exactly sure we’re capable of throwing sympathy at someone who’d be intimidated by a ballet dancer. Though one might make the argument that that’s exactly the type of person who should be spared as much time in the big house as possible.
Ex-Merrill Analyst Says `Intimidation' Led to Leaks [Bloomberg]
**We kid. It was 16. And yes, we’re going through some sort of personal problem that manifests itself in the excessive use of **s. Further explanation TK in our “The More You Know” spot (concerning both the bun in the oven and the **s. And this is JC, for those keeping count at home).