There’s a new player in the insider trading case against former Goldman director Rajat Gupta, and he could be an asset to Gupta’s defence.
His name is Ravi Trehan, a friend of Gupta’s and once a partner that collaborated with Rajaratnam and Gupta on an investment firm, according to the Wall Street Journal. Trehan’s role in the Gupta trial was made public just today. Gupta, a former head of McKindsey & Co., is accused of passing on insider information to convicted insider trader and former Galleon Group founder Raj Rajaratnam.
The value of Trehan’s possible testimony would lay in his description of a phone call Gupta made to Trehan right after the Goldman board of directors approved a $5 billion investment from Warren Buffett at the height of the financial crisis, the WSJ reported. Gupta is accused of passing on the information to Rajaratnam following the meeting, after which Rajaratnam loaded up on shares of Goldman Sachs.
But his phone call to Trehan after calling Rajaratnam suggests something else that the defence is likely to take full advantage of—
Mr. Trehan says Mr. Gupta didn’t mention the Buffett deal in the call on Sept. 23, and that neither Mr. Trehan nor Broadstreet bought or held any Goldman stock during 2008, according to his lawyer, Ms. Sheth. She says he doesn’t remember all the details of the call, but that it appears that the men were talking about a meeting scheduled for the next day on a prospective investment.
Mr. Gupta’s defence team would likely use Mr. Trehan’s testimony about the call to show jurors that he wasn’t focused on telling associates about the Buffett deal, people familiar with the matter said.
Think they have a good defence case built up?