A jury has found Martin Shkreli guilty on two counts of securities fraud and one count of conspiracy to commit securities fraud, and not guilty on five other counts, in a trial that centered on the former pharmaceutical executive’s management of two hedge funds.
Shkreli, a brash 34-year-old best-known for his belligerent personality and for hiking the price of a life-saving drug, Daraprim, while CEO at Turing Pharmaceuticals.
“This was a difficult case primarily because of the anti-Shkreli sentiment, and to the extent that this jury acquitted Martin of five of eight counts, it is a real testament to trial by jury,” said Shkreli’s lawyer, Benjamin Brafman, in a statement outside the courthouse after the ruling.
The government alleged that Shkreli defrauded investors and lied about the funds’ performance, and that he later stole more than $11 million from another company he founded, publicly traded Retrophin, to pay back those investors.
Shkreli told “Lies upon lies,” including claiming he had $40 million in one of his funds at a time when it only had about $300 in the bank, Assistant U.S. Attorney Alixandra Smith said in closing arguments last week.
The case was tricky for the government because investors, some wealthy financiers from Texas, condeded at the trial that Shkreli’s scheme actually made them richer, in some cases doubling or even tripling their money on his company’s stock when it went public.
Some investors had to admit on the witness stand that partnering with Shkreli was “The greatest investment I’ve ever made,” he added.
While Shkreli did not testify at his own trial, he was outspoken on social media and in front of reporters outside the courthouse, which led the judge to personally rebuke him and prosecutors to demand a gag order.
Shkreli remained defiant following his conviction on multiple counts, expressing satisfaction with the ruling.