September 30, 2023

DealBook: Rajaratnam Jurors Hear More Tapes

Seated behind the defense table, Raj Rajaratnam leaned back in his chair and flipped through a spreadsheet detailing the government’s wiretaps against him.

It was the second time during deliberations Monday that jurors had asked to rehear secretly recorded tapes of Mr. Rajaratnam, a new record of sorts. Since they began deliberating the fate of the Galleon Group co-founder two weeks ago, jurors have not asked to listen to tapes more than once a day, if they’ve asked at all.

Mr. Rajaratnam, who is accused of gaining more than $60 million using inside information, seemed at ease as he paged through the document, titled Government Wiretaps, which laid out the callers, content and date of each of the calls at the center of the government’s case against him.

A cheat sheet was hardly needed. All of but one of the dozen calls requested were between Mr. Rajaratnam and Rajiv Goel, a former executive at Intel who pleaded guilty to leaking inside information and testified against his friend at trial.

Jurors seem to be focusing on Mr. Goel and his alleged leaks related to Clearwire, a joint venture that Intel was planning to invest in with a number of other companies. At trial, Mr. Goel testified that he leaked information about the deal to Mr. Rajaratnam before its public announcement.

The Galleon networkAzam Ahmed and Guilbert Gates/The New York Times Click on the above graphic to get a visual overview of the Galleon information network.

In the calls, Mr. Goel discussed the timing of the investment with Mr. Rajaratnam, in addition to his own personal needs, including a job and a GPS system for a trip to Europe the men were planning with their families. Mr. Goel tells Mr. Rajaratnam about the potential board members in the new venture that Intel is investing in, a fact Mr. Rajaratnam is unimpressed with. In another call, Mr. Rajaratnam says he has just made bought shares in PeopleSupport on Mr. Goel’s behalf, trades the government claims were made based on inside information.

The one tape that did not include Mr. Goel happened between Mr. Rajaratnam and his brother, Rengan. But the subject of that call, too, was the Clearwire investment. In the call, Rengan Rajaratnam is upset about a news article detailing the terms of the investment ahead of the public announcement from the company.

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