As you've probably heard, yesterday afternoon Mathew Martoma née Thomas was sentenced to 9 years in prison for orchestrating "the most lucrative insider trading scheme ever" during his time at SAC Capital. Understandably upset and perhaps having also read the civil complaint in which their son's boss was identified as "Portfolio Manager A," mom and dad had this to say:
Speaking on the sidewalk outside the old federal courthouse in Lower Manhattan, Mr. Martoma’s parents said he had been wrongly convicted. The couple asked why Mr. Martoma’s former boss, Steven A. Cohen, the billionaire investor who founded SAC, was not also charged with insider trading if their son had done something wrong.
"...the man who made all the money is on a yacht, my son is going to jail."
While there is obviously a touch of bias involved here, these statements seem relatively reasonable, whereas the arguments offered for why Martoma/Thomas was found guilty...
“He was framed,” said Lizzie Thomas of her son, Mathew, who was convicted in February by a federal jury in Manhattan. His father, Bobbie Martoma, then added that his son had refused to cooperate with the federal authorities against Mr. Cohen because he did not want to violate the Commandment against “bearing false witness.”
We're not religious scholars, but isn't the bearing false witness commandment about not telling lies about your neighbor? So if Martoma refused to cooperated against Cohen because he didn't want to violate the 9th Commandment, doesn't that mean he didn't want to make up stuff about the Big Guy insider trading?
More importantly, re: the idea of this elaborate framing of Martoma/Thomas: was the "it was a set-up!!" defense also used when the whole fake Harvard Law transcripts business went down? Because it seems possible.
Martoma, SAC Capital Ex-Trader, Gets 9 Years in Prison [Dealbook]
Sheelah Kolhatkr [Twitter]