Martin Shkreli fraud trial opens in NY

Martin Shkreli fraud trial opens in NY

Prosecutors say he used the money to repay investors from two hedge funds in what they called a Ponzi-like scheme, and used assets to pay off his own personal loans and other debts.

With controversial pharma exec Martin Shkreli’s fraud trial set to begin in Brooklyn, at least a dozen jurors have been excused for bias against the so-called “pharma bro”, Bloomberg reports. Brafman intends to argue in court that Shkreli lacked the requisite criminal intent to defraud investors and relied on his trusted counsel, Greebel.

Shkreli is also known for having an eccentric social media presence, trolling several journalists and notoriously getting banned from Twitter for allegedly harassing a Teen Vogue writer.

Shkreli’s trial is expected to last four to six weeks, according to the AP.

Former Turing Pharmaceuticals CEO Martin Shkreli arrives to federal court in New York, Monday, June 26, 2017. Five of the counts carry a maximum sentence of 20 years in federal prison, and the other three carry a maximum term of five years.

“Everything I’ve read, I believe the defendant is the fact of corporate greed in America”, a male prospective juror said Monday.

The 34-year-old is accused of stealing millions from a second pharmaceutical company to pay back losses from bad trades in a hedge fund he had on the side. But as the NYT discovered, many of those dismissed were let go because they already had such a negative view of Shkreli.

Shkreli is on trial of on charges unrelated to his drug pricing.

When the man was sent out of the huddle of the judge, prosecutors and defense lawyers who made up the sidebar participants, Brafman said the claim that the man might be in fear of his safety from Shkreli was “absurd”.

“I’ve seen some of the defamitory comments he’s made on that platform”, the man said.

When Shkreli asked this month for his $5 million bail to be reduced to $2 million, his loquaciousness worked against him.

“I don’t think he’s afraid of my client”, Brafman said. He also offered $40,000 for a math proof and $100,000 for tips on the killing of DNC staffer Seth Rich.

At a hearing last Monday, prosecutors cited public boasts about his wealth in refusing to reduce Shkreli’s bail from $5 million to $2 million U.S., as he had requested, citing the need to pay taxes and legal bills. “There are going to be jurors who will be fans of mine”.