The value of cooperating with the government was demonstrated again yesterday, when a federal judge decided to spare a Galleon Group insider-trader jailtime.
Adam Smith testified at Galleon chief Raj Rajaratnam's trial and offered "substantial" assistance to investigators. He pleaded guilty to insider-trading charges last year.
But while Rajaratnam was sentenced to 11 years in prison after his Smith-assisted conviction, and other non-cooperators have received between six months and 10 years in the clink, Smith was sentenced to just two years' probation.
U.S. District Judge Jed Rakoff also ordered him to forfeit $105,300 and imposed a $15,000 fine.
Smith said that he was "deeply sorry for the mistakes I've made and I'm incredibly humbled and ashamed." He added, "I apologize to those who I have caused pain and harm, to my wife, my friends and my family. I love my wife, my sons, my family and my friends."
Faced with such a statement, the sharp-tongued Rakoff couldn't help himself. "I hope this won't be taken too cynically," the judge said, "but why is it that defendants always remember how much they love their families after they've committed the crimes that place that relationship in jeopardy?"