'Overwhelming' vs. 'Fiction': Closing Arguments Paint Opposing Pictures In Rajaratnam Case

Apr 21 2011 | 1:21pm ET

Jurors in the Raj Rajaratnam insider-trading trial yesterday heard competing summations of the evidence they've heard over the past seven weeks, as prosecutors and the Galleon Group founder's legal team sparred during closing arguments.

Assistant U.S. Attorney Reed Brodsky, repeatedly referring too and playing portions of the thousands of wiretaps at the heart of the case, called the evidence against the former hedge fund billionaire "overwhelming." John Dowd, Rajaratnam's lead attorney, scoffed at that notion during his summation, calling the case against his client "a fiction."

"You heard the defendant commit his crimes time and time again, in his own words," Brodsky told the seven women and five men on the panel that will decide Rajaratnam's fate. "The tapes show he didn't believe the rules applied to him. Cheating became part of his business models."

Those tapes offer "devastating proof of the defendant's guilt," Brodsky claimed.

Nonsense, Dowd offered, following the prosecutor's summation, calling the government's case "ridiculous" and "a fiction."

"You cannot convict Raj on a fiction," he told the jury.

"He worked hard for Galleon investors to make smart investments," Dowd said. "It's legal to seek out information and trade stock on it. That was Raj's job. That was his duty."

Dowd also blasted the government's parade of star witnesses and alleged co-conspirators, many of whom struck deals with prosecutors in exchange for their testimony and cooperation.

"Their testimony is unreliable and worthless," Dowd proclaimed. "When the government came knocking, they blamed it all on Raj."

Dowd will complete his closing argument today. His client faces decades in prison if convicted.


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