Friday, 1 August 2014
Last updated 7 hours ago
Jul 15 2011 | 11:41am ET
Hedge fund manager Vincent McCrudden's death threats against almost 50 government officials were part of "an ongoing public discussion about the honesty and efficacy of the financial regulatory system," his lawyer is to argue today.
Bruce Barket will ask a federal judge to allow him to "introduce evidence that there is an ardent and vocal community of people within the financial world who believe (rightly or wrongly) that these organizations are corrupt and/or inept," to show the "context" of his client's allegedly threatening and profanity-laced e-mails to a number of regulators. Barkett has also asked that McCrudden be freed on bail and the trial, set to begin on July 18, be postponed due to new evidence about where McCrudden allegedly sent one of his e-mails.
McCrudden has said that several government agencies, including the Securities and Exchange Commission, Commodity Futures Trading Commission and National Futures Association have a vendetta against him, citing his 2002 indictment on mail fraud charges and his denial of NFA registration after his acquittal.
Barket said that the location in Singapore where prosecutors say McCrudden sent the e-mail was easily hacked, and that "there are a large number of disgruntled persons who bear considerable animus towards the CFTC and NFA, and who would have a substantial motive to send the anonymous e-mail."
Prosecutors say that McCrudden posting an "execution list" with 47 names on his Web site, urging readers to "go buy a gun and let's get to work in taking back our country from these criminals." McCrudden promised to be "the first to lead by example." Another e-mail allegedly written by McCrudden—but appearing to originate from CFTC Chairman Gary Gensler—to the NFA's Daniel Driscoll read, "it wasn't ever a question of 'if' I was going to kill you, it was just a question of when."
Prosecutors will argue that Barket "offers no logical connection between his threats to kill more than 40 people and the vague beliefs of unidentified members of an undefined group."