Gupta changes mind, refuses to testify in his defence

Former Goldman Sachs Group Inc board member Rajat Gupta, on trial on insider trading charges, has decided not to testify in his own defense, two days after his lawyer said it was "highly likely" he would take the stand.

"After substantial reflection and consideration, we have determined that Mr Gupta will not be a witness on his own behalf in the defense case," Gupta's main lawyer, Gary Naftalis, wrote in a letter to US District Judge Jed Rakoff on Sunday.

  Gupta changes mind, refuses to testify in his defence

If convicted on charges of securities fraud and conspiracy, Gupta faces a possible maximum 25 years in prison. Reuters

Gupta, 63, is fighting charges that he illegally divulged financial information to his one-time friend and business associate, Galleon Group founder Raj Rajaratnam, between March 2007 and January 2009 while serving on the boards of Goldman and Procter & Gamble Co.

The trial in US District Court in New York began on May 21 and prosecutors rested their case o n Friday. As the defense began its leg of the case, Naftalis told the judge after the jury had gone home for the weekend that "it is highly likely my client will testify."

The trial resumes on Monday and the jury is expected to hear closing arguments on Wednesday.

Gupta, who was convicted a year ago of insider trading and is serving an 11-year prison term, opted not to testify in his own defense. If convicted on charges of securities fraud and conspiracy, Gupta faces a possible maximum 25 years in prison.

Reuters

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Updated Date: Dec 20, 2014 09:08:53 IST