Rajaratnam Jurors Hear Chiesi Tapes

May 6 2011 | 1:39pm ET

The jury in the Raj Rajaratnam insider-trading case yesterday turned to the Galleon Group founder's former co-defendant during the second day of their second round of deliberations.

The jurors listened to six wiretaps yesterday, all involving former New Castle Partners executive Danielle Chiesi, who pleaded guilty just weeks before the trial began. The tapes appear to show Chiesi obtaining and sharing allegedly confidential information with Rajaratnam, who then appears to coach her on how to cover her trail.

"You should buy and sell, buy and sell," Rajaratnam says on one of the tapes.

Jurors heard several examples of Chiesi's colorful, flirtatious side, which was sometimes reciprocated by Rajaratnam.

"You did it in such a classy way," Rajaratnam said of Chiesi's mining of an Akamai Technologies executive for information. "The way you worked the relationship."

"It's a conquest," Chiesi responds. "It's mentally fabulous for me."

Jurors also heard a call in which the former Akamai executive, Kieran Taylor, tells Chiesi he has "a major present" of information "for you."

Chiesi's paranoid side also came through: On one call, she asks Rajaratnam, "Do you think in this environment, everybody's being investigated, do you think I could buy it here, honestly?"

"And I'm glad we talk on a secure line," she added. "I appreciate that."

"Right," Rajaratnam said. "I never call you on my cellphone."

It was the second straight day that the jury, which was forced to restart its deliberations on Wednesday after U.S. District Judge Richard Holwell dismissed a juror for medical reasons, listened to taped phone calls.

The tapes were not the only thing the jury asked for yesterday. The panel sent a note to the judge requesting a document, but citing a document number that did not exist. It is not the first such error by the jury, who have nearly 2,000 documents and exhibits to sift through.

Holwell told the jurors he would "give them a few cues and maybe that will solve the problem."

Rajaratnam, who faces decades in prison if convicted, was not in court yesterday after having emergency surgery on his foot. But he returned today, wearing a blue vinyl medical shoe on his right foot, walking with a limp.


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