Martin Shkreli is innocent, a genius
MARTIN SHKRELI is not a likable man, not even close. This is the same pharma bro who jacked up a drug for AIDS treatment 5000% overnight. This is also the same guy who’s hunted down tabloid writers on Twitter…
With a lightning rod personality, Martin Shkreli is a social media genius and an innocent man on trial for “having made his investors too much money.”
Martin Shkreli is the poster child of what many across America truly believe about New Yorkers and folks working on Wall Street: they are snarky, self-serving assholes and criminals.
Are aggressive business tactics illegal? Not necessarily. Can someone be convicted of a crime when there is no victim?
Martin Shkreli, a die-hard New Yorker is on trial in Brooklyn federal court for securities fraud. It’s a bizarre case where there is NOT a single soul claiming to have lost money investing with Shkreli.
Just the opposite, every one of the government’s witnesses who testified under oath told the jury he or she had at least doubled their money with Martin Shkreli. Several witnesses told the court they had become multimillionaires because of Shkreli’s investing efforts.
Shocking, aren’t these government witnesses supposed to say bad things about Martin Shkreli? The reality is there is nothing Shkreli has done that may have wronged any of those ungrateful minds, including a father-daughter duo: Fred Hassan (former CEO of Merck, a major pussy cat) and Sarah Hassan (the spoiled brat daughter). The Pakistani-born Muslim Hassans made several million dollars with Shkreli!
Trying Martin Shkreli, Denigrating New York’s business culture
About 12 million people cram Manhattan on a daily basis. There is competition everywhere: from fighting over a seat in a subway train to seizing on any chance of making the biggest bucks. A cutthroat business culture is what makes New York the most competitive place on earth. At the top of the food chain is this nerdy finance-geek-turned-scientist Martin Shrekli.
Federal prosecutors in New York’s Eastern District (EDNY) are desperately trying to put Martin Shkreli behind bars. Among the prosecution’s many ulterior motives is their “stepchild” syndrome: an unflattering image as the “junior varsity” to the far more capable big brother prosecutors in New York’s Southern District (SDNY), formerly headed by the notorious PREET BHARARA.
New York federal prosecutors in general have a mixed bag of success and failure. Just recently, the SDNY suffered major blows including the Appeals Court’s dismissal of politician Shelton Silver’s highly publicized public corruption case, the Appeals Court’s reversal of wrongful convictions of two European bankers (their testimony was compelled – like torture by a foreign authority) and the ongoing battle for constitutional right violations claimed by American hero financier David Ganek against Preet Bharara…
Yes, the EDNY prosecutors have picked the wrong case against Martin Shkreli – without a single victim could easily exacerbate their own “Napoleon syndrome.”
Fair game, who lost money with Martin Shkreli? No one
VICE has recently put out a fair story about Martin Shkreli, which is rare in this day and age when the rich are mostly hated.
In the process of presenting their case, which centers on allegations of securities and wire fraud, the feds have painted a picture of how the 34-year-old financial wunderkind came back from a bet gone horribly wrong: lying and stalling his way into the windfall needed to pay back a coterie of well-off investors.
The vast majority of the prosecution’s witnesses have been unable to show they actually lost money investing in Shkreli’s hedge funds, an emotional hallmark of many white-collar criminal trials. Instead, the notorious Internet troll is chiefly accused of misleading clients by using stock from biotech company Retrophin to pay them back in what the feds say amounted to a Ponzi scheme—albeit one that kinda worked out for a bunch of clients in the end.
An investor who took the stand, David Geller, was strung along for over a year when it came to getting back the $200,000 he’d invested a Shkreli-helmed fund called MSMB Capital. But after the onerous delay, Geller, who looks like a high school football coach, got back $300,000, plus 2,000 shares of stock in Retrophin he eventually sold for $315,000. So even though he had to send a bunch of emails begging Shkreli to respond, and even though Shkreli seemed to engage in deeply shady business practices along the way, the man ultimately netted $415,000 for doing next to nothing.
Another investor jurors are supposed to feel sorry for is Tim Pierotti. To be clear, Shkreli sending Pierotti’s wife a threatening letter, as revealed this week, does seem unhinged and wildly inappropriate. But Perotti’s last gig before saddling up with Shkreli was at the Galleon Group, where he was involved in a trade targeted by the feds as part of a probe that sent notorious insider trader Raj Rajaratnam to prison. Like many other Shkreli prey, Perotti made millions investing with him.
It often feels like the only people who should care about the outcome of this trial are the prosecutors who indicted Shkreli and, of course, the defendant himself. A high-profile case against a viral finance guy is a big opportunity for the US Attorney’s Office in the Eastern District of New York, which very rarely gets to dig its claws into business bros, as Wall Street proper falls in the Southern District—a.k.a. Manhattan. Shkreli could face 20 years in prison if he’s convicted.
Tempting though it may be, it would be a mistake to see Shkreli potentially going to prison for these charges as justice. The story of the Most Hated Man in America won’t be resolved until pharmaceutical companies are no longer allowed to charge sick people whatever they want for the rare drugs they need to survive.
If the so-called American justice involves jealous prosecutors eager to pad their own resumes, the Martin Shkreli case neatly fits that bill.
Let Martin Shkreli go free.