Bench Press: Federal Judges in New York Sentencing Defendants In Insider Trading Cases

THE WALL STREET JOURNAL, MONEY & INVESTING, Wednesday, October 10, 2012

Declarative Sentence?  Rakoff Varies It

By Michael Rothfield, with contributions by Chad Ray

“Former Goldman Sachs Group Inc. director Jajat Gupta is the highest profile of more than 70 defendants convicted of insider trading in New York federal court in the past three years.  But this month he will likely receive a more lenient sentence than the 11 year sentence term given to Raj Rajaratnam, to whom Mr. Gupta provided his illegal leaks, legal experts say.” 

Picture of Judge Jed Rakoff in his Manhattan chambers with the comment that the judge “doesn’t always hew to sentencing guidelines.”  

“Bench Press:  How some federal-court judges in New York have sentenced convicted defendants in insider-trader cases during the past three years.”  (There is a graph showing how four judges, including Judge Rakoff, sentenced four defendants below the minimum guidelines.) 

Bench press is a play on words, judges sit to hear cases, not usually on a bench, but they could have years ago.  Weight lifters compete by lifting heavier and heavier weights.  In a bench press, one lies on  a bench and lifts the weights.

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