Prosecutors Want To Play Rajaratnam Tapes At Gupta Trial

May 1 2012 | 3:12am ET

Accused Raj Rajaratnam tipster Rajat Gupta's prosecutors want the jury in the case to hear the Galleon Group founder's voice—on tape.

The U.S. Attorney's Office in Manhattan yesterday indicated that they plan to play three wiretapped phone calls involving Rajaratnam, who was convicted of insider-trading last year and is now serving an 11-year prison sentence, at Gupta's trial. Gupta himself was on none of the three calls—prosecutors do not have tapes of the phone calls on which Gupta is accused of passing confidential information about Goldman Sachs and Procter & Gamble to Rajaratnam—but, they wrote in a pre-trial filing, "Rajaratnam's statements in the subsequent wiretapped calls with [Galleon trader Ian] Horowitz and [Galleon portfolio manager David] Lau provide indispensible evidence" that Gupta did, in fact, tip Rajaratnam.

Gupta's lawyers have until May 11 to respond. Gupta, a longtime friend of Rajaratnam's and former head of McKinsey & Co., served on the boards of Goldman and Procter, but his lawyers have argued that Galleon had other sources at Goldman who could have provided the information in question, including quarterly earnings and Berkshire Hathaway's 2008 investment in Goldman.

"Rajaratnam's statements in these three recorded conversations are essential evidence of the insider-trading charges against Gupta in this case," prosecutors wrote.

Gupta did not testify at Rajaratnam's trial, but his voice was heard by the jury on a recorded conversation. Goldman CEO Lloyd Blankfein, who is expected to testify at Gupta's trial, which begins on May 21, testified in the Rajaratnam trial that the information Gupta discussed with Rajaratnam was confidential.

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