CDR Financial’s Rubin Can’t Delay Trial for Dying Wife

CDR Financial Products Inc.’s David Rubin, who says his wife is in the final stages of terminal cancer, lost a bid to postpone his trial on bid-rigging charges, which is scheduled to begin next week in New York.

A federal appeals court in Manhattan declined Rubin’s request that it order U.S. District Judge Victor Marrero to grant the trial delay.

“While the circumstances here might well warrant an adjournment of the trial, we cannot say that the experienced trial judge’s refusal to grant a continuance constitutes an exceptional circumstance amounting to a judicial usurpation of power or a clear abuse of discretion,” a three-judge panel of the court said in a one-paragraph order on Dec. 23.

The trial, which is scheduled to start with jury selection Jan. 3, is expected to take two months. Gail Rubin, David Rubin’s wife of 26 years and the mother of his seven children, is in the final stages of pancreatic cancer in California, where they live, his lawyers said in papers filed with the appeals court. Rubin claims his wife’s illness and concerns for his children will make it impossible for him to adequately participate in his defense.

Bradley Simon and Brian Waller, lawyers who represent Rubin, didn’t immediately return a message today seeking comment on the appeals court decision. In papers filed with the appeals court Dec. 23, they said their client hasn’t been able to help them prepare and isn’t likely to attend the trial if it goes forward as planned.

Rubin, the founder of Beverly Hills, California-based CDR, and two other employees were charged along with the company as part of an investigation into bid- and auction-rigging in the municipal bond market. Rubin, the firm’s former chief financial officer, took kickbacks for running sham auctions for the investments, prosecutors said. All pleaded not guilty.

“Whenever the trial is held, it will pull Mr. Rubin away from his family, either during his wife’s final days or his children’s first days without their mother,” Marrero said in an order denying Rubin’s request for a delay earlier this month. “Of course neither situation is desirable, but trial is unavoidable.”

The case is U.S. v. Rubin, 1:09-cr-01058, U.S. District Court, Southern District of New York (Manhattan).

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