Insider-Trader Kimelman Sentenced On Eve Of Rajaratnam Reckoning

Oct 12 2011 | 1:18pm ET

He could have spent no time in jail at all. Instead, Michael Kimelman, convicted in the Galleon Group insider-trading scandal, could do more than two years hard time.

Kimelman, a former trader at hedge fund Incremental Capital, was sentenced to two-and-a-half years in prison today for his role in the scandal. He was convicted in June of conspiracy and securities fraud alongside Zvi Goffer, a former Galleon trader who led one of two interlocking insider-trading rings, and his brother, Emanuel Goffer.

Zvi Goffer was sentenced to 10 years in prison and Emanuel to three.

"I am ready to pay the price and face the consequences for my decision," Kimelman said today in court.

Kimelman has a few things to regret: both his participating in the scheme, and his refusal to take a no-jail plea deal offered by prosecutors before the trial. Kimelman's lawyers then failed in their effort to tell jurors about that refusal, which they said "is probative of a state of mind devoid of guilty knowledge."

Kimelman's sentencing served as something of a prelude to that of the most important member of the Galleon ring, Galleon founder Raj Rajaratnam. Rajaratnam will be sentenced tomorrow; the former billionaire faces up to 24 years and five months in prison.

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