Galleon Defendant Emanuel Goffer Sentenced to 3 Years — Did he Get Off Easy?
12:05 pm, October 7th | by Amy Tennery
Former hedge funder Emanuel Goffer was just sentenced to three years behind bars, after being convicted of conspiracy and securities fraud in June. Goffer was a member of a vast insider trading scheme, prosecutors argued, led by Galleon Group leader Raj Rajaranam. He was convicted alongside his brother, Zvi Goffer, who had previously worked with Rajaratnam, and another trader, Michael Kimelman.
The sentence was handed down just this morning, according to a Bloomberg report, falling far below the federal sentencing guidelines of 51 months to 63 months. In fact, it even falls below what Goffer had requested — a prior Bloomberg story said that Goffer was hoping for anything less than 46 months.
This development seems to be a sharp reversal in sentencing patterns in the Galleon insider trading network.
In August, Jason Goldfarb, an attorney convicted in Galleon’s web, received the same sentence Goffer did — even though, by many accounts, he played a relatively minor role in the scheme, serving more as a go-between with information than anything else. At the time of Goldfarb’s sentencing, the judge had this to say about his rationale:
“A message needs to be sent to a broader audience,” Judge Sullivan said, as lawyers need to know that is they engage in insider trading, “they’re going to be destroyed financially, they’re going to be disgraced, they’re going to be disbarred, and, yes, they’re going to go to jail.”
And, last month, Emauel’s brother Zvi Goffer was sentenced to 10 years. Admittedly, his role was said to be more critical than Emanuel’s. But still, by comparison, it would seem that one brother fared far better than the other.
But the most remarkable part of this? All three sentences were handed down by the same judge, Richard Sullivan. What happened to the “message” he was sending with Goldfarb?
One theory? Perhaps Goffer’s plea for leniency actually worked. He told the court late last month that his son wasn’t reaching “age appropriate gross motor milestones,” and implied that his presence was crucial for his child’s development.
Sure, it was a long shot — but it’s a heck of a lot better than the “unique constellation of ailments” Rajaratnam is falling back on, perhaps.