Rajiv Goel, the former Wharton classmate of Raj Rajaratnam who testified against the Galleon Group co-founder, was sentenced to probation for his role in the biggest hedge fund insider-trading scandal in U.S. history.
Bloomberg reports that U.S. District Judge Barbara Jones declined to impose a prison term on Goel, 54, Monday in Manhattan federal court. She said Goel, who had faced as long as 25 years in prison, was crucial to the prosecution of the fund manager, now serving an 11-year prison term following his conviction last year. Like two other key witnesses against Rajaratnam who cooperated with the U.S., Goel was ordered to serve two years of probation.
'Mr. Goel, you showed good sense in deciding to cooperate', Jones said just before she announced her sentence. 'There is no excuse, but in this case, because of your cooperation I did think you showed your character in the extent of your cooperation, I think you did go beyond and for that you deserve a departure of probation'.
Goel, a former Intel Corp. (INTC) treasury group managing director who was arrested with Rajaratnam in October 2009, pleaded guilty in February 2010 to conspiracy and securities fraud. Goel testified over four days at Rajaratnam’s trial about their 25-year friendship, which began when they attended the Wharton School of the University of Pennsylvania. He said he conspired with Rajaratnam from 2007 to 2009 and passed him illegal tips about Intel.
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