By REBECA IBARRA & JOAN MARTINEZ
Federal jurors began deliberations on Tuesday in the Manhattan trial of Mathew Martoma, a former portfolio manager for a major hedge fund firm involved in one of the most lucrative insider trading schemes in U.S. history.
Martoma, 39, accused of receiving classified test results from doctors Joel Ross and Sidney Gilman on an Alzheimer’s drug being developed by pharmaceutical companies Elan and Wyeth, faced one count of conspiracy and two counts of securities fraud.
According to court records, Martoma used the insider information he allegedly received from the doctors to buy shares of Elan and Wyeth stocks and recommended his employers, SAC Capital Advisors, do the same “which,” records show, “they did;” avoiding loses and reaping profits of $276 million, proseecutors said.
Defense Lawyer Richard Strassberg allotted much of his closing arguments on Monday to attacking the credibility of Gilman, who provided key testimony that he warned Martoma of the drug trial’s failure one week before it was made public on July 2008 and avoided prosecution by testifying.
Strassberg accused the U.S. government of rushing to justice and using Martoma as a “means to make a case against Steve Cohen,” founder of SAC Capital Advisors.
Assistant U.S. Attorney Eugene Ingoglia said “the evidence in this case leads to one and only one conclusion: That Mathew Martoma is guilty as charged.”