Saturday, 19 August, 2017

Guilty: 'Pharma Bro' Martin Shkreli Convicted Of Securities Fraud

Martin Shkreli and attorney Benjamin Brafman arrive at the U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of New York Drew Angerer Getty Images
Lamar Ellis | 05 August, 2017, 01:13

"Before he made headlines as the CEO of Turing Pharmaceuticals, Shkreli founded a pharmaceutical company, Retrophin, and a pair of hedge funds, MSMB Capital Management and MSMB Healthcare".

After almost five full days of jury deliberations, Martin Shkreli has been found guilty of three counts of securities and wire fraud.

The Friday decision ends five days of jury deliberations after a five-week trial in federal court in Brooklyn.

After getting their money, prosecutor said, Shkreli quickly lost much of it, and also used some of it to capitalize his infant pharmaceuticals company, Retrophin, even as he continued sending out financial statements to investors claiming positive returns.

Shkreli showed little emotion as the verdict was read, but outside the courthouse portrayed it as a victory, though he could face up to 20 years in prison for securities fraud.

Normally, a securities fraud trial wouldn't merit this kind of interest, but Shkreli has been a notorious figure ever since he raised the price of a toxoplasmosis drug back in September 2015 from $13.50 a tablet to more than $700.

Prosecutors said Shkreli eventually paid investors back with stock or cash from Retrophin by having them sign settlement or consulting agreements with the company. He was found guilty of securities fraud but not of conspiracy to commit securities fraud and conspiracy to commit wire fraud, AP reported.

His defense argued that Shkreli did not have "fraudulent intent" to rip off investors. He was acquitted of five other criminal charges.

Shkreli called the case "bogus".

"This is not a case where anybody was defrauded!", Shkreli lawyer Benjamin Brafman shouted in the courtroom during his closing argument, according to CNBC.

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