Martin Shkreli was so confident that he could be acquitted of securities and wire fraud charges that he proclaimed before the trial that he was “so innocent” that the judge, jury and prosecutors would have to apologize to him.
Sadly for Mr. Shkreli, the judge, jury and prosecutors found him guilty instead, and the “pharma bro” faces up to 20 years in prison. Reported the New York Times:
Martin Shkreli, accused of defrauding his hedge fund investors and a pharmaceutical company, was convicted on three of eight counts on Friday, after a five-week trial in the Federal District Court in Brooklyn.
He faces as much as 20 years in prison…
Mr. Shkreli was accused of securities and wire fraud related to two hedge funds he ran, MSMB Capital and MSMB Healthcare. Prosecutors charged he then illegally used a pharmaceutical company he founded, Retrophin, to repay the defrauded MSMB investors.
The prosecution brought forth an “avalanche” of evidence, as the prosecutor Jacquelyn Kasulis put it in her rebuttal argument, that included a threatening letter he sent to the wife of a former employee, statements he sent to MSMB investors showing great returns at the same time he had no money in fund accounts, three versions of a backdated agreement to make it look as if MSMB Capital had invested in Retrophin when it had not, as well as claims about assets under management that were wildly out of line with his actual fund size.
Shkreli was, as my dearly departed friend Chez Pazienza wrote, “the smug, 32-year-old asshole who made headlines a couple of months ago when he and his pharmaceutical company hiked the price of a life-saving HIV and cancer drug by around 5000%, justifying the move by saying that, well, it would make him a lot of money.”
It is unclear how much jail time Mr. Shkreli will actually serve, but the case was, as the Times noted, a “major victory for federal prosecutors”. This means Shkreli — who looks about as able to survive prison as a prepubescent choirboy — will serve a considerable stretch of time.
To quote my friend Chez again, who penned this little epithet in response to Shkreli getting arrested for the crimes he has now been charged with, this is a beautiful day:
No matter what else is happening today, no matter how dangerous ISIS may be or how high Donald Trump might be polling, no matter whether you’re unemployed or underemployed or employed just fine but unhappy with your job, no matter whether your husband or wife just left you, no matter what — today is still a pretty good day. That’s because the universe just threw all of us a bone by giving us the chance to revel in probably the most delicious mass schadenfreude we’ll taste this decade. Put simply, Christmas has come a little early..
Bye, Martin. Good luck in prison. You’ll definitely be needing it.
Ben Cohen is the editor and founder of The Daily Banter. He lives in Washington DC where he does podcasts, teaches Martial Arts, and tries to be a good father. He would be extremely disturbed if you took him too seriously.