Raj says he couldn’t take the government’s plea deal, even though it was pretty awesome, according to a new interview with him in the Daily Beast –
It was Rajaratnam’s understanding that were he to plead guilty and wear a wire, he might be offered a sentence of as little as five years. With good behaviour, he could be out in 85% of that time.
His two former friends, Anil Kumar and Rajiv Goel, took a plea deal. Raj didn’t. Now he’s going to jail (or a medical centre, if the judge’s recommendation is followed) for 11 years.
The judicial system’s policy on plea deals was cited many times during the Raj trial. Raj’s lawyers suggested that it was controversial, and that it incentivized Kumar and Goel to testify against him, and perhaps worse.
Although Judge Holwell didn’t cite it a reason for giving Raj a much lighter sentence than was recommended by the prosecution (24 years), Raj’s lawyers referred to Raj’s decision to not take a plea deal many times while defending him to the jury, and it also provided a convincing argument for a light sentence when the time came. The lawyers explained Raj’s decision to not take a plea deal like this >