Rajat Gupta Seeks to Avoid Prison With Supreme Court Plea

Former Goldman Sachs Director Rajat Gupta
Rajat Gupta, former Goldman Sachs Group Inc. director, center, exits federal court after being sentenced for insider trading in New York, on Oct. 24, 2012. Photographer: Victor J. Blue/Bloomberg

Rajat Gupta, the former Goldman Sachs Group Inc. director found guilty of insider trading in 2012, asked the U.S. Supreme Court to allow him to remain free on bail so he doesn’t have to report to prison next week.

Gupta, who is also a former McKinsey & Co. managing partner, is the highest-profile executive convicted in a U.S. crackdown on insider trading at hedge funds. He was found guilty of passing illegal tips to the billionaire Galleon Group LLC co-founder, Raj Rajaratnam. Gupta is scheduled to surrender to prison authorities on June 17 to begin a two-year sentence.

Gupta asked Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg for an order continuing his bail while he appeals the conviction. Gupta argued in papers filed with the court yesterday that there’s no risk he will flee and he’s likely to win his Supreme Court appeal based on legal errors he claims were made in his case.

Gupta, 65, said that if the Supreme Court agrees to review his conviction after he reports to prison, he’ll have served at least half the two-year sentence before his case is decided.

A federal appeals court in New York affirmed Gupta’s conviction in March. The court is considering his request to rehear the case.

Gupta claimed wiretaps used in the case against him were improperly admitted. He also argued that he should have been permitted to present evidence of his good character to the jury.

Raj Rajaratnam was separately convicted and is serving an 11-year sentence in a federal medical prison in Ayer, Massachusetts. His brother, Rengan Rajaratnam, begins trial on criminal insider trading charges June 17, the day Gupta is scheduled to begin serving his prison sentence.

The case is Gupta v. U.S., U.S. Supreme Court (Washington).

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