good ship galleon

The Sexy Side of (Alleged) Massive Insider-Trading Schemes

Finally, the Raj Rajaratnam trial decided to gives us what we wanted from a massive insider-trading investigation with wide-reaching repercussions for the financial industry: sex appeal. Naturally that means Danielle Chiesi, the former beauty queen who equates trading business information with orgasms, is back in the spotlight. Things started to get a little loosey-goosey in the courtroom as jurors listened to a wiretap of Rajaratnam urging Chiesi to be quiet about information from her sources, AMD CEO Hector Ruiz and former International Business Machines executive Robert Moffat. who admitted to an affair with Chiesi. According to The Wall Street Journal, the wiretap went thus:

We’ve got to keep this radio silent,” Mr. Rajaratnam told her on the call. “Not even to your little boyfriends.”

“Believe me, I don’t have any friends,” Ms. Chiesi replied.

Before Mr. Rajaratnam and Ms. Chiesi hung up, she said, “Love you.”

The point of the wiretap was not to expose Chiesi’s part in the insider trades. Both she and Moffat have already pleaded guilty. The effect of her “tight red suit with red fishnet stockings” and “suggestive” dance moves on technology executives has already been documented. No, prosecutors played the wiretap to show Rajaratnam’s role in covering up the scheme.

Today, they trotted out Anil Kumar, another witness who already pleaded guilty, to convince jurors that Rajaratnam was their ringleader. And, once again, Chiesi’s sexiness was at the center of the discussion.

Rajaratnam, a man who knew how to get the most out of his alleged network of insiders, wasn’t quite as flirty with Kumar. Rather, he tried the negging approach. According to Kumar’s testimony, Rajaratnam told him Chiesi’s “intimate relationship” with Ruiz, head of chip manufacturer AMD, meant that she got better dirt. Therefore, the value of Kumar’s secrets were “diminished.” Jeez, it’s enough to make a man wish he could pull off red fishnets.

Rajaratnam Faked Email as Cover-up, Prosecutors Allege [WSJ]
Did Raj Rajaratnam Not So Subtly Suggest Anil Kumar Should Trade Sexual Favors For Inside Information? [Dealbreaker]
Rajaratnam Favored Chiesi’s Tips on AMD, Kumar Tells Galleon Trial Jurors [Bloomberg]

The Sexy Side of (Alleged) Massive Insider-Trading Schemes