RAJAT GUPTA --CONVICTED
NEW YORK: Jury foreman Richard Lepkowski didn't want to convict Rajat Gupta of insider trading. To him and other jurors, Gupta had lived a "storybook life" and "the American Dream", he said. In the end, though, the case was just too strong.
When the 12 jurors reached the courtroom to deliver their verdict at 11.38am on Friday, two were in tears. "I struggled, I'll be honest with you," said Ronnie Sesso, 53, a youth advocate who works for New York City's Administration of Children's Services. "I was trying to determine the outcome of this person's life."
Hours after the verdict, 51-year-old Lepkowski said in an interview at the Manhattan federal court, "I wanted to believe the allegations weren't true. Here was a man who came to this country and was a wonderful example of the American Dream. But at the end of the day, those allegations on which we found guilt — the evidence was overwhelming."
Lepkowski, a resident of New York, is an executive at the non-profit Children's Tumour Foundation.
Gupta, orphaned as a teenager in India, rose to become managing partner of McKinsey & Co and a director at Goldman Sachs and Procter and Gamble. On Friday, he became the most prominent executive to be convicted in a five-year US crackdown on insider trading at hedge funds.
Jurors weighed the evidence for nine and a half hours over two days before convicting Gupta of one count of conspiracy and three counts of securities fraud, the maximum sentence for which is 20 years in prison. They acquitted him on two counts of securities fraud. The trial lasted four weeks.
"It's hard," said Agnes Sanders, a retired librarian from Manhattan. "I'm sure we reached the right verdict, but it's hard."
RAJAT GUPTA --CONVICTED Reviewed by sambasivan srinivasan on 12:27:00 PM Rating: