Money

Raj Rajaratnam Convicted; Largest Hedge Fund Insider Trading Case

| by Mark Berman Opposing Views

A billionaire Wall Street hedge fund manager was convicted Wednesday in the largest hedge fund insider trading case ever. Raj Rajaratnam made $64 million in illegal profits by using tips from his colleagues.

Rajaratnam was convicted in New York City on all 14 counts against him -- nine securities fraud counts and five conspiracy counts. He faces 19 1/2 years in prison when he's sentenced. The judge allowed him to remain free on home detention with an electronic monitoring bracelet.

According to a report in the New York Daily News, the 53-year-old Rajaratnam once cleared $20 million for his Galleon Group fund on one deal by getting insider information from a former Wharton School of Business classmate.

"I told him this was 'red-hot' and shouldn't be discussed... treat this with the strictest of confidence," said Anil Kumar, who testified against Rajaratnam.

Several other people provided similar testimony, including some who faced charges and made deals with prosecutors. In all 21 people pleaded guilty in this investigation.

But clearly Rajaratnam was the big fish.

"Raj Rajaratnam, once a high-flying billionaire and hedge fund manager, is now a convicted felon, 14 times over," U.S. Attorney Preet Bharara said in a statement.

The defense said Rajaratnam relied on legal research and analysis. The jury thought otherwise.